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Monday 11.16.09

« East/West interview with galleryHomeland by Gary Wiseman | Main | work so sweet »

Strange bedfellows these days: legitimacy and money

Jerry Saltz has written his response to the whole New Museum debacle (which strangely became legitimized last week with the New York Times Article, though it was Tyler Green and William Powhida who really started the debate, Green was cited as being, "notoriously self righteous," by the Times). More like notoriously ten steps ahead of the New York Times. Anyhow, I see both Jerry and Tyler's arguments but in this case Tyler is notoriously right and scrupulous.

The problem isn't the fact that this is going on in an economic freefall, it is that this looks like pre-crash business as usual when everyone wants the New Museum to do something legitimately new. Whereas, Koons and Urs Fischer are poster children for the excesses of the past 9 years in the art world, frankly it's anything but New. I like both artists but when the word NEW is in your name you need to be careful you deliver what the name promises. The art world has been looking for a lightning rod for change, a signpost that something fresh was coming and when the New Museum foisted their petard up the flagpole they got zapped.

How about a post boom artist or someone the post boom artists can look to? An Iza Genzken or Lynda Benglis curated show would have gone over much better than Koons and followed through on Unmonumental's success as an opener (so far nothing has equaled their opening show... that's a problem). I believe artist curated shows might be the answer for the New Museum but the trick is they have to be by someone who isn't synonymous with lucre when things are being stripped back to basics. The New Museum is being held to new standards because everyone wants them to be successful in revitalizing New York's art scene (in a qualitative not the same old quantitative $$$ way)... hopefully that haven't completely jumped the shark and can contrast Koons/Fischer with something much fresher after this bit of shortsightedness.

Photo by Sarah Henderson

The Find, Claiming Nelscott Reef is an independent film opening this week about Oregon big wave surfing and the absurdities surrounding ownership of said wave. Not your typical surf porn it looks fascinating and you can catch the premier at the Hollywood theater on Wednesday at 7:00 PM. PORTstar Sarah Henderson is the co-producer. For more info here is an interview with the director Erich Lyttle from last night.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 16, 2009 at 10:59 | Comments (0)


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