Minimalism and mementos

By GREG COOK  |  June 2, 2010

Souvenirs usually highlight the cleaned-up, beautiful, historical, sexy bits of places. Zygmunt's work reflects that desire to get off the tourist circuit when you're traveling, to get a taste of life as it's lived. The other artists stick with tourist dreams. Lise Grossmann paints pretty little handmade postcards of a baguette, the Eiffel Tower, and other icons of France, where she resides. Shannon Buck of Portland, Oregon, makes lithographic montages of nostalgic travel imagery — canceled postage stamps, "par avion," palm trees, advertisements for hotels and taxis. James Milostan of Wisconsin riffs on the Paul Bunyan legend with pennants and pictures featuring the grinning but not very well-drawn face of the jolly giant in a cap. (At first, I thought it was some sort of celebration of beard and trucker hat culture — which might have been cooler.) All this stuff is nice and pleasant, but kind of vapid.

Read Greg Cook's blog at  gregcookland.com/journal.

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