Three recent and encouraging data points:
The collapse of Damien Hirst’s art market — Bloomberg notes that “at a time when the contemporary art market has sharply rebounded, with auctions pulling in proceeds that rival the giddiest pre-recession highs,” Hirst’s value has jumped the shark. “Hirst works acquired during his commercial peak, between 2005 and 2008, have since resold at an average loss of 30 percent. And that probably understates the decline — judging from the dropoff in sales volume, collectors aren’t bringing their big-ticket Hirsts to market. A third of the more than 1,700 Hirst pieces offered at auctions since 2009 have failed to sell at all — they’ve been ‘burned,’ in the terminology of the art world.”
“The Curse of Warholism” — In The New Republic, critic Jed Perl speaks for many: “I would be perfectly happy never to see anything by Andy Warhol again. But Warholism does need to be addressed, because it poses a direct threat to any nuanced experience of the arts.”
This conference in California, to my knowledge the first academic gathering of critics, philosophers, and artists on the rejuvenation of representational art.
All good signs.
Ten years ago I suggested that the postmodern art world had become stale (and again here), even on its own terms, and that the art world was ready to move on. Re-making the art world will be the work of energetic, creative artists and critics — and philosophers. As Perl notes above, it’s Warholism more than Warhol that is the problem.
Posted 1 year ago at 9:22 am. 4 comments
Wade Guyton uses a computer printer to generate long strips of linen with red and green stripes. And he is the subject of a positive profile in The New York Times.
Guyton says this about his training: “I never really enjoyed drawing or art classes.”
And about his inspiration: “I realized that the process of drawing didn’t make sense to me. The labor didn’t match up to what I was trying to do. And I thought the printer could make these things better than I could.”
About the stripes: “It’s interesting for me to take something so insignificant and minor and affectless on its own and let it permeate in many different ways.”
Andy Warhol’s support is enlisted: “Warhol, after all, said: ‘Paintings are too hard. The things I want to show are mechanical. Machines have less problems.’”
A fellow artist gushes: “I was blown away. I must have gone back three or four times. I particularly admire the way he repeats motifs with just the slightest changes.”
Mistakes occurred in the making: “The largest of [the red-and-green striped canvases] — stretching 50 feet — has noticeable red smears of ink and the illusion of folds where the stripes were printed off-register … . ‘It would be wrong to have tried to correct these things,’ Mr. Guyton said.”
A learned professor helps us understand: “People tend to misread his work. They see it as only bound up with media and technology but it’s actually another version of the de-skilled, ready-made work.”
Source: Carol Vogel, “Painting Rebooted,” The New York Times, September 27, 2012. Viewed October 1, 2012. Thanks to J. G. for the link.
Posted 1 year, 2 months ago at 5:36 pm. 2 comments
A Spanish translation of my “Why Art Became Ugly” has been published online. I do not know the translator, but to him or her I say: “Thanks!”
The original piece was published in English in Navigator in 2004 and is now online here and has been translated into German [pdf], and Korean [pdf]. It’s also included as a supplement in the Expanded Edition of my Explaining Postmodernism.
Posted 2 years, 1 month ago at 6:39 pm. 3 comments
The Kindle version of the new, Expanded Edition of my Explaining Postmodernism: Skepticism and Socialism from Rousseau to Foucault is now available. The hardcover will be out next month.
The expanded edition also includes my Free Speech and Postmodernism and From Modern to Postmodern Art: Why Art Became Ugly essay. Images of the art works discussed and referred to in the latter essay are available at a dedicated page at my website here.
More on the Expanded Edition here.
Posted 2 years, 4 months ago at 2:50 pm. 2 comments
My four-page essay “Post-Postmodern Art” has been translated into Serbo-Croatian by Alma Causevic.
The essay was originally published in The Newberry Manifesto in 2001 and is also available in English in a re-print edition with images of the relevant works [pdf].
Posted 2 years, 10 months ago at 4:59 pm. 2 comments
Chris Vaughan has created a self-guided PowerPoint slide show version of my short essay on modern and postmodern art:
“Post-postmodern Art” Slide show [PowerPoint].
Also available in HTML at the Newberry site and here in PDF with the relevant images.
Posted 3 years, 6 months ago at 2:28 pm. 2 comments
My four-page essay on “Post-Postmodern Art” was originally published in The Newberry Manifesto in 2001.
It is also available in a re-print edition with images of the relevant works [pdf].
Posted 5 years, 10 months ago at 12:32 pm. Add a comment
Originally published in The Newberry Manifesto, 2001.
Also available with images of the relevant works [pdf].
Posted 12 years, 7 months ago at 5:42 pm. Add a comment