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Wednesday 10.12.16

« Weekend Picks | Main | Andy Warhol retrospective interview with Richard Axsom »

Wednesday Links

First Brexit, now England is devaluing the importance of art history as a form of education. Not a good sign for the USA where such things have never been taught or valued much, leading to a lack of critical thinking skills.

5 art cliches that have run their course. I agree, limp fabric was DOA years and years ago, anyone who tacks a tarp or dropcloth from the studio floor on a wall is generally not concerned about looking like a derivative hack. Leaning stuff, also weak. Stacks of anything... especially stuff that looks like it was found in a dumpster is also deeply lame. I'll add another, anything grotty looking on top of a wood grained or painted plinth. People, Isa Genzken and Rachel Harrison did this years ago... Rauschenberg, decades ago. Its revival happened almost 20 years ago and caught on at MFA programslike wildfire since. It is done and isnt a bus that artists can catch anymore.

Curator resigns in St. Louis after controversial art hits the wrong notes. Its true the work was tone deaf... but if curators had to resign for that there would be no curators at major institutions. The problem is the way that artists overreach to try to glom onto relevant topics when their own experience doesn't have any true relationship to what is being discussed. Sometimes (ok often) curators confuse an "authentic" sentiment with one that verity. In fact the word "authentic" usually means it definitely isn't the real deal and is more of a tribute. This overreach is a kind of backhanded disrespect... it happens constantly. Rule of thumb for artists and curators at this time where nerves are more than a little raw... never settle for simulacra of outrage when the real thing is readily available and more powerful. I fear that this will further encourage institutions to shy away from strong art that polarizes though. Still, at CAM the only thing that was polarizing was it was the "authentic" outrage rather than the real thing right outside the door. Lately, curators have been choosing the "authentic" to be safe but it is backfiring now especially when the curator used the time honored arrogant rebuke (people just wont stand for that now but it is super common in the art world). It is an incredibly thin line and the Richard Mosse interview I did last year explores the issue well. In that case the artist owned he risks involved by being there and engaging the documentary tradition by somewhat destroying it... he wasnt just trying to insert himself with the work, he actually did insert himself and risked his life to do so.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on October 12, 2016 at 13:35 | Comments (0)


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