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Eugene Ludins: An American Fantasist

by The Staff on February 14, 2013

 

This exhibit, opening this weekend at the New York State Museum, shines a light on 20th-century Woodstock artist Eugene Ludins, a painter of “realist and fantastical landscapes, provocative political allegories, and insightful portraits.”

Ludins was associated with the Maverick colony in the late 1920s, became Ulster County director of the Works Progress Administration in the late 1930s, and was a field director of the American Red Cross in the Pacific Theater in World War II.

It’s shocking to realize, then, that until a few years ago, Ludins’ works languished, forgotten, in the concrete vault the artist built for them a few years before his death. Writing on last year’s Ludins exhibit at the Dorsky Museum in New Paltz, the critic for the Roll Online wrote that this rediscovery “represents an unusual opportunity for viewers to look with fresh eyes upon a body of work that hasn’t been previously sifted by the critics, pre-?packaged by an army of collectors, historians, and tastemakers, and digested by the public.”

Eugene Ludins: An American Fantasist opens Saturday (Feb. 16) and will remain on view through May 12 in the West Gallery at the New York State Museum (Empire State Plaza, Albany). There will be a reception on March 2 from 2 to 4 PM. For more info, call 474-5877.