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Saturday 12.17.05

« Breaking News: New Curator | Main | Le Happy est Cinq! »

Out on the web

I've, said it before... and Ill say it again Edward Winkleman's blog site has the best content oriented art posts on the internet, here is a lengthy discussion about purity of medium in photography. I finally got to meet him in Miami and want to congratulate him on his gallery's move from Brooklyn to Chelsea.

Tyler Green has been on fire with his assault on Pixar's show at MoMA. Also, make certain to check out his Miami picks (I'll have an illustrated essay involving Miami and all sorts of other art world sediments in my next monthly NWdrizzle magazine article).

Back in the neighborhood Chas Bowie is writing about art a lot again in the Mercury, we fling critical poo at eachother occasionally but I miss his voice in the art scene when he's writing about hipster tripe instead. Here he jinxes several good artists for the upcoming Oregon Biennial (funny thing was, most of these people [*correction who were living here at the time] applied to the last one except for Hildur who isn't eligible because she lives in freakin Iceland). Maybe, I'll make a list and jinx all the other decent eligible artists too!

Posted by Jeff Jahn on December 17, 2005 at 11:54 | Comments (7)


I have to offer this correction. At the time of the last Oregon Biennial, Chris Johanson and Jo Jackson didn't officially live in Portland. E*Rock, Brad Adkins, and The M.O.S.T didn't apply. And I'm guessing that Lee Krist didn't apply either, on account that he wasn't living here at the time.

Posted by: jerseyjoe [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 17, 2005 01:01 PM

I wonder why Green, a guy who argues that money driven fairs like Miami Basel are the new biennials, would be so up in arms about a Pixar show at MoMa?

Posted by: stephencleary [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 17, 2005 02:23 PM


Thanks, I made the correction ... although I'm fairly certain Brad entered the 2003 biennial as a part of his collaboration in the Charm Bracelet... Suggestion lists for biennials are funny things, they build up pressure (which is good) but it also makes the show seem inevitable which is bad, so the curators typically don't include too many obvious names. I'd like this biennial to be full of surprises. Besides, for most local artists who have already been in one it loses a lot of its importance. It is doubly true of those who are already showing internationally (that list is continually growing). Overall, I'd really like this one to be an exhibition rather than an exposition.

SC, to my eyes Tyler Green seems to be one of the few journalists who will hold Museum's accountable for their actions. I'm certain he can speak for himself on this but he really pays attention to how and why programming is generated. Major museums operate under the understanding that they are entities that hold cultural artifacts in a kind of public trust. That trust gets cheapened when a corporation utilizes the galleries as part of a PR or an ad campaign. MoMA gives Pixar the patina of immense cultural relevance that seems fishy. If Brad Pitt and Angelina took up painting and offered the show MoMA nobody would stand for it... why is it ok for Pixar to do the same and leverage their media saturation into a respected museum setting? Taking something that is hot awill bring people and or money in the door but "in theory" some things should require the correct pedegree as well. It's true though, money is still part of the process.

Green's point about Biennials is somewhat true... the WB is continually eclipsed by the major art fairs as a place to advance an artists cultural standing. I think Whitney Biennials could matter but they would have to take a lot more risks than they currently do to outshine Art Basel, ABMB and the Armory events with all of their sattelite fairs. Curators often don't wield the power they have (ala great ones like Walter Hopps, Alfred Barr, RIP) instead they get involved in politicking and try to make certain they have a "good" show... having a great show often means risking a terrible show and the major New York Museums have become a bit conservative. Maybe the WB 2006 will prove all of the naysayers wrong?

Most New York critics and art types liked the 2004 WB. I felt it was tame and seemed more like art cliffnotes from the previous 5 years rather than an show which set the tome for the next 2 years. It was applauded for that?

At least Jerry Saltz called Schjeldahl out on that very point.

Posted by: Double J [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 19, 2005 12:24 PM

I think Green does a great job. I really enjoy MAN.

I know that the museum is supposed to act in the public trust, I just wonder if a museum show would be any less tainted if it produced exhibitions of "legitimate" art filtering up through corporate sponsored, $$$ focus events like Basel. The legit art world continues to insist that it has a magic on/off switch when it comes to the influence of money on art. Any hard look at the legit art world would uncover tactics that would make Kenneth Lay blush...never mind the marketing executives at Pixar.

I don't think that the rise of the art fair and the fact that many recent art movements (Superflat, School of Hickey, Design influence etc.) are proud of their marketing savvy is a coincidence. Artists, museums and gallerists are going to continue to push the commercial line. In the end, art is essentially compromise. Are we supposed to be proud that Pixar is the Maginot Line?

Posted by: stephencleary [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 19, 2005 02:39 PM

What's the difference between exhibition and exposition?

Posted by: jerseyjoe [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 19, 2005 06:31 PM

Never mind. According to the thesaurus at dictionary.com, an exposition could mean "statement", "ballyhoo", "treatise", "bazaar", or about 40 other things, while an exhibition could mean "scene", "fireworks", "parade", "pageant" or about 40 other things with some overlap.

Posted by: jerseyjoe [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 19, 2005 06:39 PM

My definitions re art:

Exposition: when variety and the massive activity is foregrounded. Quantity over quality is part of it but it is only part. I consider art fairs to be expositions.

Exhibition: Each piece is carefully selected and displayed to create a strong experience. It's a more limited # of quality works.

Posted by: Double J [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 19, 2005 07:42 PM

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