Art: Key Contemporary Thinkers by Diarmuid Costello, Jonathan Vickery

By Diarmuid Costello, Jonathan Vickery

The previous couple of many years have witnessed an explosion in rules and theories on artwork. artwork itself hasn't ever been extra well known, yet a lot fresh pondering continues to be inaccessible and hard to exploit. This e-book assesses the paintings of prime thinkers (including artists) who're having an incredible effect on making, criticizing and analyzing artwork. every one access, written through a number one foreign professional, offers a concise, severe appraisal of a philosopher and their contribution to thought of artwork and its position within the wider cultural context. A advisor to the major thinkers who form today's international of artwork, this booklet is a crucial reference for somebody attracted to sleek and modern artwork, its historical past, conception, philosophy and perform.

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This interest in feminist concerns segued with issues specific to photographic theory when, during a visiting artist post at Berkeley in 1976, Kruger engaged with the writings of WALTER BENJAMIN and ROLAND BARTHES and their respective analyses of technically reproduced art and semiotics. Alongside her art practice, Kruger has taught, curated and written. For several years she regularly wrote criticism for Artforum, mainly reflecting on TV and film. Her criticism revels in discussions of TV flotsam such as The Muppets, Johnny Carson and The Home Shopping Club, and is seeded with gestures to critical theory, for example, commodity fetishism, the rhetoric of realism, and the identificatory mechanisms of camerawork.

For Owens, Kruger’s photo-text collages map the existence of patriarchy through a critique of male desire and its annexing to the gaze, which ‘objectifies and masters’ (Postmodern Culture, p. 77). That ‘truth’ is a fiction wielded by power is a stance Kruger appears to share. Truth implies certainty and the oppressive binary of non-truth. For Kruger, as for Owens, even the binary of gender is untenable. While, for Owens, there is no question that the address of Kruger’s work is gender-specific, deconstruction and post-structuralism teach that signifiers are unstable, including ‘I’ and ‘you’, masculine and feminine.

Since the late 1960s, Kosuth’s writings have aimed to further refine the distinction between Conceptual art and all other modes of art practice, avant-garde and traditional. During the 1970s, Kosuth turned a purifying polemic on Conceptual art itself, resulting in the distinction between ‘theoretical’ Conceptual art and ‘stylistic’ Conceptual art. The former, asserted Kosuth, was the only model able to illuminate the essential kernel of art’s reality by virtue of its being a self-reflexive critical practice that takes as its subject the condition of art, rather than the subject position of artist or spectator.

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