Art: A Disciple's Progress

The Dutch abstractionist Piet Mondrian moved to New York City in 1940 and died there four years later. He was the greatest of all the European artists who, displaced by war, settled in America and began the ferment that culminated in what Art Historian Irving Sandler, in an infelicitously imperial phrase, recently called "the triumph of American painting." Yet the results of Mondrian's sojourn have to some extent been set on a back burner.

Only a fraction of the energy that went into the study of abstract expressionism has been spent on Mondrian's small...

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