Why do bloggers think readers will find it a charming affectation of their online persona when they make inappropriate comments? Culturegrrl stands out from the crowd this week, exaggerating her bloggy voice to complain about the site’s unjust omission in this month’s issue of Art in America on the Blogosphere. Although these names or links do not appear on her site, congratulations are in order to Jeff Jahn, Regina Hackett, Edward Winkleman, Libby Rosof, Roberta Fallon and Tyler Green, for their hard work. I am looking forward to reading their conversation with Peter Plagens in the magazine this month.
In other blogger related news, New York Magazine’s Joshua David Stein covers i heart photograph’s Laurel Ptak’s first curated show at the midtown gallery Higher Pictures. The blog isn’t bad, so the exhibition probably warrants some attention, but Stein reveals himself to be the laziest of writers. Witness the following:
Ptak is one of a growing breed of online curators who have translated blogging success into the realm of real-world galleries. Shows curated by bloggers are, if not quite common, no longer unheard of. Last year Pace/MacGill partnered with SVA to curate a show of self-portraits culled from Flickr. In June, Jen Bekman Gallery invited photo blogger Jörg Colberg of Conscientious to co-curate a portrait show. But both exhibitions went up during the sleepier, less commercial summer months. (The Flickr images weren't even for sale.) Higher Pictures' Iheartphotograph show might be the first real test of whether a blog curator can make it in the hypercompetitive world of contemporary photography.
I’m not sure why Self Portraitr at blue chip gallery Pace/MacGill, or the Jen Bekman/Jörg Colberg collaboration A New American Portrait should any less of a test to blog curators simply because it took place in the summer or is less commercial (a mischaracterization at least one of the two galleries was selling work.) As far as I’m concerned, writers who construct false histories simply to justify their write-ups do a disservice to everyone involved. None of the players are represented fairly, including iheartphotograph, who I’m sure would rather have the show discussed in relation to the sensibility of the blog, as opposed to an inaccurate, and at this point inconsequential position of who did what when. Photo exhibitions curated by web professionals are not new.
New York Magazine also features a letter from Jerry Saltz, in response to Martin Bromirski’s post Jerry Saltz is an Undead Zombie, (thanks Martin!). Saltz fess’s up, apologizing for lifting exact phrases from a similarly themed piece he wrote for the Village Voice last year, but stands his ground on the legitimacy of the piece. I hate to be the apology police, but no link was given to Bromirski, who was identified only as “a blogger.” Even Bromirski’s identifying title is problematic since it inevitably belittles his position. Earlier related links to Tyler Green’s two part post on why he hated the piece here.
It’s hard to know for sure what, if any value judgment Green attaches to the performance group he links to since he writes sparsely, but if I’m reading him correctly, he suggests Fine Art becomes watered down and turned into entertainment when absorbed by Western culture. Assuming I am correct my response reads as follows: Why is this a point of discussion since the group isn’t claiming art inspiration? What’s more, the phenomenon noted is nothing new, nor is there anything wrong with it. What we are looking at is cyclical; artists are not only inspired by American Culture, they are inspired by rearticulated fine art phenomenon.
Update: Tyler Green explains in the comments section ,
I wasn’t attaching any judgment. I was merely entertained. Very entertained. The page/video is hilarious. And when the little kid says what he found most surprising about the whole experience I almost died.
(And over the years I’ve frequently noted how things that started in the art world crossed over into broader contemporary culture. It was in that spirit that I posted the link.)