Alonso G. Smith


1945, oil/canvas, 22" x 28"

Hot air bubbles circulate throughout the gallery where the hostess displays noncontroversial paintings while serving refreshments on a rejected artist's canvas. On the floor, a critic evaluates a masterpiece through the wrong end of a telescope. A lady of culture pretends to explain meaning, in the ornately framed, innocuous canvases, to an affluent art patron trailing his money behind. The rejected artist sprawls on his canvas (now a trap door) and reaches for solace in a bottle; he ignores the empty handshake of two gloves nearby. Hot air bubbles circulate everywhere.

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