Art: Out of the Junkyard

In general, U.S. museums do not just reflect art history. They program and write it through their selections, their "theme shows" and their imprimatur. But Manhattan's Whitney Museum, with dedication if not full impartiality, has clung to the principle of a survey—not declaring where it thinks artists are supposed to go but where they are actually going. In the present show, devoted this year to sculpture, there are 99 artists showing one work apiece, and it is simply intended to provide a survey of American sculpture as it now stands.

The result is a...

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