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MY FAVORITE FIFTY
by Charlie Finch
 
Now that Jerry Saltz has announced that he and his spouse Roberta Smith are writing a book on their favorite 100 paintings and challenged his fans to contribute, I spent last night trying to answer Jerry's task.

Man, it is hard to think of 100 favorites all at once. So, presuming that Jerry and Roberta will each pick 50 (though, if they collaborate and try to agree on 100, the project should take years!), I have fudged and chosen my 50. Some of them I liked enough to buy, and, of course, the price was right: Daze, Iona Rozeal Brown, Sherry Wong, Lisa Ruyter.

Others are ones that I have recently encountered, while many have stuck in my gourd since childhood. I have seen 95 percent of them in person. So, in no particular order, and because it's August, I shall do Jerry's bidding. . . .

  1. Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, SUPPER AT EMMAUS
  2. Lisa Ruyter,  BADLANDS
  3. Édouard Manet,  AT THE TUILERIES
  4. Eric Fischl, POSTCARD PORTRAIT OF JERRY AND ROBERTA
  5. Barnett Newman, VIR HEROICUS SUBLIMIS
  6. Iona Rozeal Brown, a3 blackface pimping and pandering #3
  7. Andy Warhol, DOUBLE ELVIS
  8. Théodore Chassériau, THE TOILET OF ESTHER
  9. Walter Robinson, ELLEN BERKENBLIT
  10. Henri Matisse, THE CONVERSATION
  11. Jean-Honoré Fragonard, THE PURSUIT
  12. Sherry Wong, SALEEM RISING
  13. Diego Velasquez, THE ROKEBY VENUS
  14. George Caleb Bingham, FUR TRADERS DESCEND ON THE MISSOURI
  15. Johannes Vermeer, WOMAN WITH A RED HAT
  16. Edward Hopper, EARLY SUNDAY MORNING
  17. Inka Essenhigh, THE LOWER EAST SIDE
  18. Andrew Wyeth, CHRISTINA'S WORLD
  19. Chie Fueki, RON
  20. Thomas Gainsborough, MR AND MRS ANDREWS
  21. Ando Hiroshige, 36 VIEWS OF MOUNT FUJI
  22. Vincent Van Gogh, THE NIGHT CAFÉ
  23. Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin, SELF-PORTRAIT WITH VISOR
  24. Frank Stella, THE MARRIAGE OF REASON AND SQUALOR
  25. Diego Rivera, THE FLOWER VENDOR
  26. Willem de Kooning, SATURDAY NIGHT
  27. Cecily Brown, WOMAN ON TOP
  28. Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres, GRAND ODALISQUE
  29. Deborah Kass, SANDY KOUFAX #3
  30. Rafael Ferrer, SOMBRERO DE PALMA
  31. Daze, JACKSON AVENUE STUDY
  32. James Ensor, CHRIST'S ENTRY INTO BRUSSELS
  33. Kurt Kauper, CARY GRANT #1
  34. Isca Greenfield-Sanders, PINK PARACHUTE (BLUE)
  35. Robert Rauschenberg, BED
  36. Marcel Duchamp, FRESH WIDOW
  37. Andrea Mantegna, LAMENTATION OVER THE DEAD CHRIST
  38. Jean-Michel Basquiat, SUGAR RAY ROBINSON
  39. Ralph Coburn, BLACK AND BLUE
  40. Charles Burchfield, ORION IN DECEMBER
  41. Gerhard Richter, BETTY
  42. Elizabeth Peyton, ANDRE
  43. Max Beckmann, SELF-PORTRAIT IN TAILS
  44. Jackson Pollock, FULL FATHOM FIVE
  45. J.M.W. Turner, THE BALLPACKET FROM ROTTERDAM
  46. Beauford Delaney, HENRY MILLER
  47. Leonardo da Vinci, THE VIRGIN OF THE ROCKS
  48. Carl Holty, ON WAR
  49. James Rosenquist, F-111
  50. Paul Gauguin, WHERE DO WE COME FROM? WHAT ARE WE? WHERE ARE WE GOING?


CHARLIE FINCH is co-author of Most Art Sucks: Five Years of Coagula (Smart Art Press).



 



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