From the category archives:

Off Our Chest

“The Politics of Art”? That Died Out in the 1970s

by Corinna Kirsch on November 21, 2012
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In the 1960s and early 1970s, art and politics were peas in a pod. For die-hard critics like Barbara Rose, who lived through these decades in New York, that was the time to be alive. Art was good then, and now it sucks. Well, that’s how her argument goes, which which she makes in the pages of this month’s Brooklyn Rail. We disagree.

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Hennessy Youngman Talk Pretty One Day

by Paddy Johnson Whitney Kimball and Corinna Kirsch on July 12, 2012
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We’re going to dole out this week’s blogger prize for Most Offensive Post one day early, because we’re pretty sure no one’s going to top GalleristNY. Yesterday, the blog celebrated Jayson Musson’s first show at Salon 94 with a two-page profile on the artist full of racist undertones. That’s an awfully strong word, and because we don’t use it lightly, we’re going to highlight exactly what we don’t like and why.

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Why is Sanja Ivekovic Plagiarizing From Wikipedia?

by Will Brand on June 14, 2012
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Documenta is trying very, very hard to be smart. It might help if they stopped giving us plagiarized Wikipedia articles as artworks.

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Nine Quotes about Art as an Investment

by Will Brand on May 21, 2012
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Whether you’re a collector, a dealer, or just an observer, the art market can be a confusing place. Right now, since we’re in yet another art bubble, it’s a very expensive confusing place. Like most expensive confusing places, it’s full of people who want your money, and who would like you to believe that giving it to them constitutes a wise investment.

So, to commemorate the launch of artnet’s new art market index and the eruption of ill-advised bright ideas that’s sure to follow, we’re here to remind you that art will probably never make you any money.

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What Discussion At Frieze Actually Looks Like

by Paddy Johnson on May 6, 2012
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How many different people do you have to shake to get art institutions and businesses to wake up? Our actions as employers affect the quality of life of others. We know this—in general, the art community votes for socially responsible policies—and yet our own labor practices are amongst the very worst across all professions.

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Now with Coco Fusco and David Shrigley! The Sotheby’s Art Handler Petition Grows

by Will Brand on May 4, 2012
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Our petition in support of the locked-out art handlers at Sotheby's just breezed past 2,000 names, and you just might recognize a few. Artists Cuco Fusco, David Shrigley, and Dana Schutz have signed on, along with a host of other concerned supporters from across the art world.

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Sotheby’s: offer your art handlers a fair contract

by Paddy Johnson on May 1, 2012
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In honor of May Day (International Workers Day) Art Fag City has taken it upon ourselves to launch a petition on behalf of Sotheby’s art handlers. They’ve been locked out of work for 8 months, and all because Sotheby’s wants to replace their jobs with temporary workers, leaving the handling of multimillion dollar works to unskilled employees.

That’s not right. If you don’t think it is either, sign this petition. Our appeal after the jump.

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Enough With Dude-Centric Net Art Shows

by Paddy Johnson on April 17, 2012
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I’m getting tired of seeing listings for dude-dominated digital art shows. Just to count what I’ve seen in the last month: The USB Show, at Paris’s Le Point Éphémère two weeks ago, invited one woman artist to participate out of 21; Astral Projection Abduction Fantasy, which ran from February 23rd to March 23rd in Dublin, included three women out of 29 artists; and the April 12th BYOB show, in Milan, only included 9 women out of 42 invited artists. These shows might as well be Lilith Fair, though, relative to the worst recent offender, Dotcom, a show organized by the anonymous collective BSNP at the Centre d’Art Bastille in France. That group show runs through June 10th and includes no women at all.

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Werner Herzog’s Hearsay of the Soul is Overrated

by Paddy Johnson on March 23, 2012
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That Werner Herzog film in the Whitney Biennial sure is a stinker. The press loves it, though. Why I think they’re wrong, after the jump.

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To Do: Annotate The PBS Animated GIF Transcript

by Paddy Johnson on March 14, 2012
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“America’s largest classroom” needs to redo its GIF lesson plan. Produced by PBS, the short “Off Book: Animated GIFs” charts an error-ridden history of the animated GIF, and offers unquestioning belief in the mythology that new technology and new art necessarily represents progress. Two artist collaborative teams using the file format are invited to talk: Pamela Reed and Mathew Rader of Reed+Rader, and Jamie Beck and Kevin Burg. They present little more than cliches. Patrick Davison and TopherChris of Memefactory and Tumblr, respectively, also offer their perspective, though TopherChris is the only one who offers any insight at all.

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