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young methuselah award

Post #181 • January 4, 2004, 1:41 PM

This is hilarious. Tom Moody on his blog:

Announcing the "Young Methuselah" Award for Longest Documented Period of Emergence by an Artist (This isn't a cynical category, but a hopeful one; because of the art world's perennial boneheadedness, you can still be a "new artist" for a very, very long time.)

And the winner is:

Scott Grodesky, who was the subject of an "Openings" column in Artforum in 1992 (which "introduced the work of artists at the beginning of their careers"), and is included this month (Jan. 2004) in "First Take: 12 New Artists" in the same magazine. "First Take" selector Carroll Dunham tries to account for this absurdity by explaining that Grodesky's work has "evolved" over the past 12 years, so he needs to be reevaluated as a new artist. Go figure.

Runner-up: Judith Eisler, whose first one-person show in NY was in the Luhring Augustine viewing room in 1995. She is also included in "First Take: 12 New Artists" in the January 2004 Artforum. I'm afraid to even look at the resumes of the other 10.

And as long as we're handing out awards, the Sixth Day Award for the Shortest Documented Period of Emergence by an Artist goes (somewhat belatedly) to Jennifer Pastor, the subject of an 1996 "Openings" column in Artforum. She was included in the Whitney Biennial (for many artists a career milestone) exactly one year later. Just keep working, people, none of this makes any sense.

UPDATE: A second runner-up for the Young Methuselah Award, Gareth James, has been named. Please see the comments to this [Moody's] post for a real laugh.

Go Tom! I've always hated the term "emerging." Someone says that an artist - sometimes the speaker - is "emerging," and I ask myself, from what? Obscurity? Disrepute? A phase of immaturity? The underside of a rock? Let's take this malformed term out to the back of the shed and shoot it.

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