From the category archives:

Opinion

The Art Market Is Not a Unicorn

by Paddy Johnson on February 12, 2016
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Looks like people are getting more visibly worried about the market crashing. They are probably right.

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New York’s Foreign-Born Artists Face Visa Headaches, Uncertainty

by Marcelo Baez on January 26, 2016
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As thousands of US artists, gallerists, curators, collectors and critics prepare to visit Mexico City for the February art fairs with relative ease, we thought about all the hoops artists from “south of the border” must jump through to visit or work in New York. Despite the obstacles, a sizeable chunk of the city’s cultural workforce and art scene are here on visas. Unfortunately, those aren’t easy to come by or maintain. We asked musician, DJ, and writer Marcelo Baez to report on the conditions New York’s unsung art workers deal with just to live here.

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Should I Get An MFA? The 2016 Edition

by Rea McNamara on January 21, 2016
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Back in 2011 AFC asked the question, “Should I get an MFA?” At the time we leaned towards “No”. There were a number of reasons cited, the most pressing being that we believed it was too expensive and most artists could get the equivalent experience in the real world.

Five years later, has much changed?

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Why Rhizome’s $600,000 Mellon Grant is a Big Deal for Digital Preservation

by Rea McNamara on January 5, 2016
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New York-based new media non-profit Rhizome announced yesterday it was awarded a two-year $600,000 grant by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to build Webrecorder, a tool that allows users to archive the internet’s “dynamic content”.

It’s a big deal—the largest grant the organization has received in its 20-year history, and a signalling of the importance for institutions to steer the development of tech tools.

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Worst of 2015

by Michael Anthony Farley on December 30, 2015
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What were the top five most scandalous stories we covered this year? The ones people read, shared, and re-tweeted the most, of course. I delved into our site stats to ask why we love bad news so much.

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Nancy Spector Joins Brooklyn Museum: No More Crowd-Sourced Exhibitions!

by Paddy Johnson on December 18, 2015
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Nancy Spector has been hired as the new chief curator and deputy director of the Brooklyn Museum. The just-announced news comes as a shock, since she has defined the Guggenheim’s programming over the course of her thirty year career there. Her tenure at the Brooklyn Museum will start in April, and there’s a lot to ponder on what will be her expected impact.

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FOX News Attempted to Troll Me at ABMB

by Michael Anthony Farley on December 11, 2015
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Last week, FOX News personality Jesse Watters visited Art Basel Miami Beach to troll the art world. The segment aired last night, after heavy redaction and blooper clips being used as filler. This is how I remember our conversation transpiring.

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Rijksmuseum takes White-Out to Art History

by Rea McNamara on December 10, 2015
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Has the trigger warning phenomenon hit institutional curation?

The New York Times reported today on an ongoing project at Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum to have their history department curators remove “racially-charged terms” from the titles and even descriptions of artworks in their collection’s online catalog.

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Racist Quebec Film Draws Ire from Everyone

by Rea McNamara on November 27, 2015
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White guys are at it again. Earlier this week, Quebec filmmaker Dominic Gagnon’s of the North enraged Inuit throat singer Tanya Tagaq as a “painful and racist” experimental documentary that used her music without permission. Tagaq took to Twitter to complain about the Montreal International Documentary Film Festival’s (RIDM) recent screening of the film.

And she’s not wrong to be upset. A bit of background: of the North compiles user-generated YouTube footage from Nunavut and Northern Quebec; it’s a mash-up of Arctic tundra landscapes populated with oil rigs, hunting, and skidoos but also Inuit men vomiting after drinking binges, and even a desperate Buñuel-esque edit of a vagina that cuts into a video of a dog’s tail hair being trimmed.

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Will Electronic Superhighway Accurately Historicize New Media and Internet Art?

by Rea McNamara on November 13, 2015
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How has technology impacted art? Whitechapel Gallery will be addressing this question in a landmark exhibition launching in January 2016. Entitled Electronic Superhighway (2016-1966), the show will bring together over 100 multimedia artworks from the past 50 years. Over 70 artists will be involved, including Nam June Paik, Cory Arcangel, Lynn Hershman Leeson, Hito Steyerl, Jeremy Bailey, Amalia Ulman, Douglas Coupland and Judith Barry.

The show is clearly a major coup for its curator, Omar Kholeif, whose rise in the artworld has garnered comparisons with Hans Ulrich Obrist. It’s an ambitious survey that is much needed in a genre still struggling for institutional validation. So, it’s concerning that a majority of the internet art represented in the show will come via the archives of new media non-profit, Rhizome. While Rhizome has substantially impacted collecting and preserving digital art works, they still only represent the perspective of one organization.

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