Wednesday, November 7, 2007


I probably sound like a broken record, but, being an artist is a privilege and a responsibility, a privilege because we get to express ourselves (a function of our social privilege), and a responsibility because we are in the public eye. It is therefore our job to present vision. I adhere to the Modernist perspective that artists should strive for larger meaning, even for the transcendental. It is our role to address the contradictions and sufferings of our time. I also ascribe to the Romantic idea that artists should brood.

How to do both without being didactic is our challenge.

For these reasons, it was a pleasure to read Christian Viveros-Fauné’s scathing review of “The Incomplete” at The Chelsea Art Museum.

He describes the show as presenting:

"an alarming paucity of deep, nettlesome intelligence - a deficit that would raise red flags in any other art market except ours. Fodder for a steady queue of patrons who prefer their expectations tickled rather than trounced, [the works of these artists] have a strong vein of cork running through them: No matter how hard their creators try to push deeper, their art invariably bobs right back up to the surface."

He goes on to say:

“…the cumulative effect of ‘The Incomplete’ is – to take a page from Neil Postman – of a generation amusing itself, if not to death, then into a kind of art-as-medium-of-entertainment obsolescence.”

Well that just about sums up my frustration, Monsieur. I’m assuming your mother-tongue, but, merci beaucoup!

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