“Definitive Statements” is a show about American art between 1964 and 1966 that Kermit Champa, who teaches at Brown University, organized in collaboration with a group of graduate students there. The exhibition and the accompanying catalogue set out to demonstrate how postwar American art reached a high tide of achievement in the Minimalism, Color-field, and Pop Art of the mid-1960s. Paintings and sculptures by LeWitt, Marisol, Oldenburg, Olitski, Stella, Warhol, and twenty-six others are presented as works of established, unquestioned value. Both the show, which was elegantly installed at the List Art Center at Brown in March, and the catalogue, with its scholarly apparatus all in place, bespeak a serene confidence in the significance of everything that’s under consideration.[1]

In a preface to the catalogue, Champa explains that “The challenge...


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