Art: The Romantic Mood

Walter Stuempfig is a stoop-shouldered Philadelphian with an unruly little mustache and a worried look. He has less to worry about than most artists, for at 35 Stuempfig is a solid critical and popular success: he has sold out three one-man shows in six years and won a reputation as the foremost young "romantic" painter in the U.S. Stuempfig's latest exhibition, which opened in a Manhattan gallery last week, did nothing to diminish that reputation, but it did raise a question : How romantic can you get?

Tenderness & Gloom. In Stuempfig's case, romantic art seemed to mean painting that...

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