Best Clyfford Still Show - 2012
Okay, the Clyfford Still Museum has only had one show, but it's so incredible, it deserves its own award. The spectacular Inaugural Exhibition was organized by Dean Sobel, the museum's founding director. Five years ago, Sobel was one of only a handful of people who had actually seen Still's work, since the artist was a major recluse. New discoveries on his part caused Sobel to completely upend all previous research on the artist, demonstrating that it was the figure, and not the landscape, that Still was referencing. This show lays out how Still began in the '20s with post-impressionism and by the early '40s had progressed to abstract expressionism — years before the rest of his generation arrived at related aesthetic conclusions. From then on, until his last works, in the late '70s, Still perfected his pictorial aims, with his paintings becoming airier and flatter as time went on. This spectacular show has true international significance — and it's still on display, for those here at home who somehow missed it.