Yesterday Ms. Blume appeared on NPR’s The Leonard Lopate Show to discuss her cover story in the September issue of Vanity Fair:
The article chronicles the explosive, decades-long controversy surrounding what may have been Jackson Pollock’s last painting. Red, Black & Silver was long owned by Ruth Kligman, Pollock’s contentious mistress during the last year of Pollock’s life. She claimed that the artist created the small, unsigned canvas as a love gift to her just weeks before the 1956 car crash that killed him.
On September 20, the painting is scheduled to go to auction in New York City at Phillips de Pury & Company auction house. Yet not everyone is convinced that Red, Black & Silver is definitively the last Jackson Pollock – or even a Pollock at all. To these detractors – who are powerful Jackson Pollock authorities and scholars – Red, Black & Silver is a work plagued by incongruity.
As Ms. Blume reported the fraught history of the painting and delved back into the vivid, often torrid world of New York’s mid-century art scene, Kligman’s trustees gave her exclusive access to Kligman’s document archive detailing the owner’s quarter-century quest to prove its legitimacy – and her own credibility.