The Puzzling Morton Bartlett


“Girl Crying,” one of “The Sweethearts of Mr. Bartlett,” at the Julie Saul Gallery

Today’s New York Times contains a review by Roberta Smith about Morton Bartlett, a somewhat puzzling artist. Bartlett, 1909-1992, was a self-taught artist who primarily worked in photography but also created verisimilar dolls of young girls and then photographed the dolls wearing finely tailored outfits in various settings. A current exhibit presents recently made color prints from slides Bartlett shot years ago. The work further reinforces, in my opinion, the idea that the line between outsider and insider artist is increasingly blurred and pointless. The images call to mind both Henry Darger and Hans Bellmer.

The review includes a slide presentation narrated by Smith. The show “The Sweethearts of Mr. Bartlett” is on view through Aug. 17 at the Julie Saul Gallery, 535 West 22nd Street, Chelsea; (212) 627-2410.

Roberta Smith. “Doll, You Oughta Be in Pictures.” New York Times. August 8, 2007.

Posted by: Ian M.

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