Sometimes, even professional arts reporters miss fascinating developments, even on stories they're trying to cover closely.
Greg Cook, author of the always compelling New England Journal of Aesthetic Research, posted on Feb. 19 about the curious case of James Martin. He's a Williamstown researcher who told Steven Litt of the Cleveland Plain Dealer that he had been hired to examine most of the paintings Alex Matter found in 2002 in a storage space. Matter says they're Jackson Pollocks. Others say they aren't.
It's an interesting story, so read up.
And inside Cook's entry, there's reference made to my story on the Boston College show featuring Matter's work.
Strangely, Geoff Edgers’ story in yesterday’s Boston Globe about Boston College’s plans to exhibit Matter’s “Pollocks” this fall doesn’t mention anything about the Williamstown study – and mistakenly suggests that the question of the authenticity of the Matter “Pollocks” remains much in doubt.
I'd like to think that Cook is using strangely as in "strangely, because Geoff Edgers is such a spectacular reporter, it's surprising he didn't notice this article before his went to press." What I really think Cook is saying is that he believes I intentionally didn't include it in my lengthy story.
Just for the record, I saw Cook's entry today. Then I found Litt's piece. Then I called the researcher, James Martin, immediately. He declined to comment. I wish I had seen the story before my earlier article. As for the question of whether these are or are not Pollocks, I'll leave that to the experts. I'm certainly not qualified to make that determination.