Monday, February 16, 2009

unattractive in both content and execution

That's an apt description of bloggerwars. Me and Britt from the chron had a dustup over the weekend about the Equivalence show that just closed at the Glassell.

Britt wrote a review that lauded it.

I wrote a sophomoric rebuttal with all the teenage angst I could muster. So did Britt!!! LOL

So in response to THIS, I must say that all the "bloody bits of bone and smeared gray matter" in the gallery were in my imagination.

I imagined walking through the gallery with someone who liked the show as much as Britt did, and then I saw my imaginary me have a daydream of being beaten with a cudgel in the back of the head, my arms hanging limp as I am held up by the collar with a fist. As I slump forward the museum guards watch from the wings, my head tilts forward and bobs with each soft thump of wood softening the back of my skull, separating plates with a quiet crack, the pitter-patter of droplets spraying across the wall following each successive blow.

As the blood flow grows thick, puddling around my knees in dark black masses, John Baldessari comes to mind. And Mel Bochner. And Sherrie Levine. The pine baton, slick with blood, spills the soupy contents out of the crushed skull with each blow, the hand on my collar grips and regrips to hold my body partially aloft, the wet shirt harder to hold every second. Bits of bone, soft slugs of brains and matted hair still clinging to shreds of scalp fly across the room, viscous red droplets trailing down the wall.

I am all for conceptualism, and I do not mean to be a populist by insisting that conceptualism be interesting, but boring shit gives me hallucinations.

BOOOOOOORING! (Baldessari)

Please don't separate the old people from the younger clap-trap, Britt. Baldessari, Bochner and Levine all graduated from universities and talked a good talk on their way to the history books but they're still snake oil salesmen when they put boring shit on walls.


A valid point Britt, that I misinterpreted your notion of "working in a similar vein" as referring to artists "translating", but you meant "abstract artworks based on color-palette samples of other artworks"- which I do agree totally suck balls.

The variety in the show intrigued me at first, and I did not read the essays, but the luster soon wore off as each element was more disappointing. The guard told me not to eat the popcorn. It was from days ago. I watched the vid of Talking Popcorn, and it was deflating and stupid, like a sham shaman divining words from a babbling brook. Even Anri Sala’s vid Intervista is not interesting- quiet and poorly edited- though you are correct that it does not deserve the scorn that the rest of the show deserves.

Britt continues: "She... fleshed out her translation analogy in her essay, describing how the various artworks correspond to different types of translation and offering a way to look at them that in some cases might not have occurred to the artists themselves. I've seen plenty of thematic shows that had to go through a lot more contortions to make their cases." This is not a glowing endorsement, just an acknowledgment of successful sophism. Art writers are sophists, and I am one too, but it is better to be fun than pedantic.

It is true that I was just bored and wanted to lash out. I'm OK with that. Are you OK with liking insider, snooty, anti-visual art?


bonus: this is a comment on the original Chron article ROFL

ignacious wrote:
The description of this exhibition borders on being pretentious claptrap. The art on display is very 'contemporary' - that is, self indulgent - and is unattractive in both content and execution.