"Dismembering Harry Smith" by Doug Harvey
Date & Time: May 4, 2001
Known as much for his aroma, mercurial temper and confrontational table manners as for his actual art and scholarship, Smith himself —his entire way of being — was a sort of transgressive artwork designed to sift the groovy people from the phonies and set the latter scurrying. The result was, of course, lots and lots of pissed-off phonies and a handful of deeply loyal groovies, of whom gathered at the Getty Research Institute two weeks ago for “Harry Smith: The Avant-Garde in the American Vernacular. Doug Harvey covers the Getty Research Institute’s symposium for LA Weekly.