|BARRY BLITT, Iraq Is the Ultimate Aphrodisiac, The New York Times, April 22, 2007|
The Power of Conventional Wisdom - NYTimes.com: "This is what you need to know: important people have no special monopoly on wisdom; and in times like these, when the usual rules of economics don’t apply, they’re often deeply foolish, because the power of conventional wisdom prevents them from talking sense about a deeply unconventional situation."
And, I just discovered Matthew Collings. Here are selections from some of his better posts:
|Kenneth Noland, lotus, 1962|
PUT DOWNS AND SUCK UPS: MATTHEW COLLINGS' WEEKLY VENTINGS ON THE ART WORLD: NO 43: REMEMBERING KEN NOLAND: "Noland's simplicity is actually difficult and complex, he concentrates much into little, and he achieves a beautiful, light, resonant, vibrating effect that transcends mere design or mere colour-matching or mere scale. Pure abstract values, pure musicality, take us to somewhere philosophical and important. This is a difficult proposal for art-worlders today. We want importance to be immediate and spelled-out, and to a degree pre-digested. We have been conditioned to believe greatness in art always has some kind of moralising component. We often don't actually want to be too much involved in art as such but in a sort of buzzing chat about the hot contemporary moment in which 'art' vaguely figures. We want the social reassurance of art, rather than its higher values, whereas Noland - whose work is a living testament to his sensitivity and passion - was much tougher and harder on himself."
PUT DOWNS AND SUCK UPS: MATTHEW COLLINGS' WEEKLY VENTINGS ABOUT THE ART WORLD: NO 36: POP LIFE: "When Warhol dubbed his studio a factory it was a provocation, it implied mass production, a pragmatic approach, contempt for preciousness -- which is great if you're making a point against snobbery, but depressing if higher values really are the target. The problem with the Warhol legacy is that no one can tell the difference."
PUT DOWNS AND SUCK UPS: MATTHEW COLLINGS' WEEKLY VENTINGS ON THE ART WORLD No 4: Happy Birthday Clement Greenberg: "But when you do get used to Greenberg's sober tone you are constantly struck not by how dated but by how timeless he is. He insists abstract values are present in both abstract and figurative art, and the art of the past as much as the present. He is good at summing up both impurity and purity. He saw Surrealist painting as an example of the former. He says such painting is really an art of 'vicarious wish fulfilment' -- 'The artist shows us how he would prefer life to look or how -- as children do -- he would prefer to be frightened.' In his description of the limitations of Surrealist painting (all pseudo-meaning, and no visual richness as such) you feel you might be hearing about the limitations of the painting of our own time: 'The Surrealist image provides painting with new anecdotes to illustrate, just as current events supply new topics to the political cartoonist, but of itself it does not charge painting with a new subject matter. On the contrary it has promoted the rehabilitation of academic art under a new literary disguise.'"