Art: The Stuff Modernism Overthrew

In a fascinating exhibit, the fashionable art of the year 1900 doesn't hold up well. But then, how will 2000's favorites look a century from now?

The sprawling show that opened this month at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City, "1900: Art at the Crossroads," is sure to be a hit with the public. It was a smash in London. Organized by art historian Robert Rosenblum and consisting of 240 paintings and sculptures, it takes an ecumenical and almost judgment-free view of its task, which is to show what kinds of art were being made at the last turn of the century, when the idea of modernism in culture was just forming, and when some of the most admired artists bore names you'd hardly recognize today--not...

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