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Post #999 • May 4, 2007, 7:59 AM • 15 Comments

I'm drawing a picture of God. (Reddit)

King-Cat Classix released. John Porcellino previously reviewed here.

The Great Color Legends. (Kottke)

One of the most deadening trends in recent years has been the Great Chinese Art Swindle. For years now we've been hearing about the vibrancy of the art coming out of Beijing and Shanghai - and it's all baloney. Earlier in the piece, Richard Dorment nails it by calling the American selection of Felix Gonzalez-Torres for the Venice Biennale a failure of nerve. (AJ)

I missed the Hopper press event at the MFA. Joel Brown did not.

I'm not linking to anymore. Hell, I'm not going to look at anymore. A man can take only so many in-browser Flash-generated pop-up ads. I will however link to Flashblock. And I will make an exception for Geoff Edgers, who reports that the MFA will soon unveil a newly loaned Tyeb Mehta, whom I rather like.

The more fully in the round Mr. Stella works, the weaker his art.

Greg Cook has been a veritable walking credit to the art writing profession lately.

Anhedonic art comes under discussion chez David Thompson.

Tomorrow is Free Comic Book Day.

Why do wet things look darker than dry things? (Reddit)

You shouldn't have to be a color expert to make the sky a deeper blue or add a bit of yellow to a sunset, said Geoffrey Woolfe, a principal scientist in the Xerox Innovation Group, who is based in Webster, N.Y., near Rochester. So we're providing that middle layer that turns plain speech into mathematical code.

Department of Skills: Francis and Lottie Brunn. People with no nerves, I find out they have no talent.

Late add: Wayne Yang interviews Jesse Mann. Super duper late add: Studiosavant sets Dr. Steven Pinker straight on modernism.




May 4, 2007, 8:10 AM

it is an issue involving body and saturation. The more body, ie water, oil, light etc. the more the literal material/physical saturation.



May 4, 2007, 8:36 AM

“Severinda” is dreadful alright.

by the way F, check out the article in the may issue of Art In America titled 'Art Schools: A Group Crit', you might be interested in it.



May 4, 2007, 9:11 AM

Mr. Dorment is right to comment negatively on the art coming out of China and heading straight into collections around here. Most of it is ghastly. Unfortunately Mr. Dorment seems perfectly comfortable liking other kinds of bad art.

The problem with art schools is sufficiently demonstrated by the lackluster, cliche-ridden written language of the people writing about it, as demonstrated by the Art in America piece, and others like it. A necessary first step for successful teaching of art, insofar as that is possible, it to keep one's distance from all that.



May 4, 2007, 9:34 AM

Check out late adds on above post.



May 4, 2007, 10:13 AM

I read the one on Pinker. I am only barely aware of him, but his gracious and honest reply on McCout's blog certainly elevates him in my estimation.



May 4, 2007, 10:39 AM

I'm fully prepared to eat my words.

I find it hard to believe, in my endless faux-anarchist state of mind, that any activity so rich in political intrigue can be sponsored by a car company. Granted, I had no speakers available to me when I saw it, so I may not be saying much. (Considering that, once again, I would probably dismiss it in juvenile rebellion)

In any case, what makes this particular summit important enough to gain a corporate tag line?


Marc Country

May 4, 2007, 11:12 AM

Ken Robinson is the first stand-up comedian with a knighthood that I've ever encountered, I think...

Re: Made in China.... Well, if you like "The Real Thing", you'll love "China Sensation: New art from Chengdu". I think the curators literally took the name "Senstation" to connect it to, you know, THAT show, and stuck "China" in front... nothing "far out" in this show, though... lots of splashy drippy figuration, mutated/alien babies, pigs, pigs, and more pigs... yawn. Now, that 'flat' show, now there's some talent...

David Thompson: “There is the long-standing rule in modern art that one should never say anything kind about capitalism… German artist Hans Haacke's Freedom is Now Simply Going to be Sponsored - Out of Petty Cash (1991) is [a] monumental example. While the rest of the world was celebrating the end of brutality behind the Iron Curtain, Haacke erected a huge Mercedes-Benz logo atop a former East German guard tower. Men with guns previously occupied that tower - but Haacke suggests that all we are doing is replacing the rule of the Soviets with the equally heartless rule of the corporations…

Caleb: I find it hard to believe, in my endless faux-anarchist state of mind, that any activity so rich in political intrigue can be sponsored by a car company.

Oh, he probably meant the TED talks... Funny... I had just watched this one from Richard Dawkins last night...

Thanks for the link, Franklin... Opie, you should get in touch with Pinker and talk art with him...


David Thompson

May 4, 2007, 11:35 AM

Just a note. The quote attributed to me is actually by Stephen Hicks.


Marc Country

May 4, 2007, 11:52 AM

Sorry Dave, I didn't mean to specifically attribute the quote to you personally, but rather to your page (or, to the link Franklin offered to the post on your page, to get painfully specific about it all)... my bad.


David Thompson

May 4, 2007, 12:03 PM

Pah. Frankly, sir, it’s an outrage. I demand justice. Pistols at dawn.

[ Waves silk handkerchief in menacing manner ]



May 4, 2007, 2:29 PM

But from China is like the new black...there HAS to be a new black, always...what would trendoids do without it? I mean, it's unthinkable to deprive them of their apparent reason for being...So what if this hyped-up Chinese stuff is mostly empty hype? Who cares? It still fits the bill for those with such a bill to fill. Let them at it; if it's not bad Chinese art, it'll be bad something else. They can't help it (or so it certainly appears).



May 4, 2007, 8:06 PM

So what do you think bloggers, "do schools kill creativity" Or do faculty kill creativity ? Or do faculty kill creative faculty ?
"I'm drawing a picture of God" video only touches the surface but is quite the reality...


Marc Country

May 4, 2007, 8:35 PM

When I clicked the Tyeb Mehta link and saw the pics, the first thing that occured to me was that it reminded me of M.F. Husain's work... and then, glancing down further, there's a photo of Tyeb standing next to the sexy M.F. himself.
So, there you go...



May 6, 2007, 5:26 AM scorpio.



May 7, 2007, 2:14 PM

regarding pinker's conflations

im not ever suprized by this sort of thing. i see this confusion in a lot of literature dealing with art peripherally. the contemporary point of vue is so schizophrenic about modernism for many reasons.
the term itself, (modernism), carries a different meaning in its more coloquial usage. when most people ,not directly involved with art ,say it they aren't refering to an historic mode of art production, but instead, to the contemporary moment. Also, the modernist movement changes its shape so drastically from the late 19th cent. to the formalist greenbergian model.
I would only defend pinker by pointing out that the reductive formal interpretation of the movement has been applied to much of that work in a revisionist manner. The german expressionists, for instance, were hardly interested in beaty, or the sublime, but are easily classified as modern.



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