the truth of art

http://www.e-flux.com/journal/the-truth-of-art/

“Already a long time ago modern artists practiced a revolt against the identities which were imposed on them by others—by society, the state, schools, parents. They affirmed the right of sovereign self-identification. They defied expectations related to the social role of art, artistic professionalism, and aesthetic quality. But they also undermined the national and cultural identities that were ascribed to them. Modern art understood itself as a search for the “true self.” Here the question is not whether the true self is real or merely a metaphysical fiction. The question of identity is not a question of truth but a question of power: Who has the power over my own identity—I myself or society? And, more generally: Who exercises control and sovereignty over the social taxonomy, the social mechanisms of identification—state institutions or I myself? The struggle against my own public persona and nominal identity in the name of my sovereign persona or sovereign identity also has a public, political dimension because it is directed against the dominating mechanisms of identification—the dominating social taxonomy, with all its divisions and hierarchies. Later, these artists mostly gave up the search for the hidden, true self. Rather, they began to use their nominal identities as ready-mades—and to organize a complicated play with them. But this strategy still presupposes a disidentification from nominal, socially codified identities—with the goal of artistically reappropriating, transforming, and manipulating them. The politics of modern and contemporary art is the politics of nonidentity. Art says to its spectator: I am not what you think I am (in stark contrast to: I am what I am). The desire for nonidentity is, actually, a genuinely human desire—animals accept their identity but human animals do not. It is in this sense that we can speak about the paradigmatic, representative function of art and artist.

The traditional museum system is ambivalent in relation to the desire for nonidentity. On the one hand, the museum offers to the artist a chance to transcend his or her own time, with all its taxonomies and nominal identities. The museum promises to carry the artist’s work into the future. However, the museum betrays this promise at the same moment it fulfills it. The artist’s work is carried into the future—but the nominal identity of the artist becomes reimposed on his or her work. In the museum catalogue we still read the artist’s name, date and place of birth, nationality, and so forth. (That is why modern art wanted to destroy the museum.)”

two types of people

http://www.artlyst.com/member-articles/there-are-two-types-of-people-in-the-art-world-artists-and-boring-fuckers

There are two types of people in the art world: artists and boring fuckers.

The boring fuckers have it in for us. They’re the ones who gleefully academicised art because they knew that real artists hate writing: essays, self-crits, artist’s statements, creative rationales, dissertations, speeches, press releases, blogs and begging letters.In the UK, in the 70s, the perfectly serviceable Dip AD was dumped in favour of a Bachelor of Arts.
Why?
In 1972, it was discovered that those who had failed their Dip AD had the highest average in O level results, and those who obtained a third in their Dip AD had achieved the highest A level results when at school. In other words, academics didn’t fare well in the practical Dip AD framework.
Consequently, later on, the boring fuckers decided to make the entry requirements and curriculum even more academic when they introduced BA, MA, MFA and PhD degrees to art. Naturally, all the little history swots rubbed their hands at the prospect of getting higher grades than their more practical, or should we say, more talented artist contemporaries. The age of the art historian and curator was dawning.
The sad thing is how many truly talented artists were discarded along the way. In order to “address the problem”, the boring fuckers introduced measures to help those “afflicted” dyslexic artists with the loan of special computers and staff support. How very kind and how very condescending. They’re not made to feel valued, or special, as many dyslexics are, but inferior. The poor dears can’t write.
Who the fuck cares?!
They’re fucking artists, not academics, or writers!

recreates scene of dead Syrian toddler

http://hyperallergic.com/272881/ai-weiweis-photo-reenacting-a-child-refugees-death-should-not-exist/

Ai Weiwei poses as drowned Syrian child Aylan Kurdi

Ai Weiwei poses as drowned Syrian child Aylan Kurdi

“Art as we know it is corrupt, exhausted and weak. We see works of postmodern masters sold to bankers for millions of dollars as signs of cultural capital and objects of financial investment. We see shimmering edifices of cultural wealth erected on the backs of hyperexploited labor—the pyramids and coliseums of the twenty-first century. …. We see so-called “social practice,” the well-funded bureaucratization of alienated people’s desire for community. And we see theoretically savvy “discursive platforms” that speak of radical democracy, militant ecology, and even communization, while recoiling at the prospect of deploying their considerable resources, skills, and potentials for the purposes of building a movement. This is no longer acceptable.

We strike art to liberate art from itself. Not to end art, but to unleash its powers of direct action and radical imagination. Art does not dissolve into so-called real life. It revitalizes real life by making it surreal. …. We strike art as training in the practice of freedom. And imagine a never-ending process of experimentation, learning and undoing, resisting and building in the unexplored terrain of an historic rupture.”

narcissism and art

https://news.artnet.com/market/art-world-narcissism-epidemic-373139

Milo Moiré taking selfies with tourists

Milo Moiré taking selfies with tourists

‘According to the American Medical Association, narcissistic personality disorder is defined as: a condition in which a person is excessively preoccupied with personal adequacy, power, prestige and vanity, and mentally unable to see the destructive damage they are causing to themselves and others.’

contemporary art is rubbish

http://www.theguardian.com/global/shortcuts/2015/oct/27/modern-art-is-rubbish-why-mistaking-artworks-for-trash-proves-their-worth

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Carlos Saladen Vargas – ‘news’ (2009)

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Carlos Saladen Vargas – ‘news’ (2009)

Carlos Saladen Vargas – ‘news’ (2009)

Carlos Saladen Vargas – ‘news’ (2009)

“But still, the cleaners keep chucking stuff away (cussed working-class critics of modern art who are the last bastions of criticism)”