The exhibition "American Short Stories: Saul Steinberg/Raymond Pettibon" at the Museum of Contemporary Art pairs Pettibon with Saul Steinberg, The New Yorker cartoonist best known for "A View of the World from Ninth Avenue" (included in the show). Like Steinberg, Pettibon's works tend to be one-paneled "cartoons" dependent on a grasp of American culture and archetypes. But while Steinberg presents a lighthearted, neurotically self-centered New York, Pettibon's dark observations tap a psychotic Southern California where meaning is only suggested and viewers must collaborate by filling in the psychological blanks with their own head trips. Accentuated by Pettibon's seemingly haphazard, razor-slash brushstrokes, these snippets appear more appropriate for a psychiatrist's office than a fine art museum. However, the trademark style allows text elements to have an equal graphic weight that would be unbalanced by finely rendered images and still lends credence to the punk ethos that anybody can make or at least identify with art. Overall this retrospective keeps to Pettibon's more introspective pieces instead of the crueler ones, yet remains piercingly funny.