Mapplethorpe Enters High-Art Temple

The Guardian says: ‘The Grand Palais in Paris is one of Europe’s most serious exhibition spaces. It is where France honours its great artists. This week, it opened a big exhibition dedicated to a US artist who has often been dismissed as a shallow sensation-seeker of the 1980s. Why is Robert Mapplethorpe getting this high-level retrospective now?’ The paper rightly credits Patti Smith for helping to keep Mapplethorpe’s name in the news. Her 2010 memoir, “Just Kids,” widened his reputation from sensation-seeking aesthete to shy, charming kid from Queens. By humanizing him, she ensured that his artistic reputation will live on. (Pictured is Mapplethorpe’s 1980 photo, “Leather Crotch.”)

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