Christopher Knight stepped into it recently when he reported on the Orange County Museum of Art’s plans to mount a retrospective of SoCal artist John McLaughlin’s work. Turns out LACMA has been planning their own bigger retrospective before OCMA made its announcement. The good news is that McLaughlin will get more attention over the next several years:
Whatever arguments the two institutions might have with each other going forward, it’s pretty clear that the essential McLaughlin retrospective will be at LACMA. (Expect it in three to four years.) Not only is its actual planning already underway, but the venue is more prestigious, which will appeal to lenders and touring partners. The museum also has highly regarded conservation capacities that can handle the often-fragile paintings the artist made, their delicate surfaces demanding pristine care. A well-known issue any retrospective will need to address is the conservation status of many McLaughlin paintings.
Critic’s Notebook: A tale of 2 planned McLaughlin retrospectives (Los Angeles Times)