ART WORLD REPORT

CONTENTS

 

1. Field Report #1 (West Texas)

2. Field Report #2 (West Texas)

3. The Golden Ratio

4. From 1847 (Copenhagen)

5. From 2020 (The City)

6. The News

 

1.

I was just thinking about a poem, a short poem, which has withstood the test of time. We used to recite this poem capriciously without giving it much thought yet as one contemplates it when he is older, realizes that it serves in all its brevity wonderful and pensive poetry.

 

In how Shelley's "Ozymandias" starkly exposes the folly of the ostentatious and extravagant endeavor of man's ego or how in such terseness Byron wistfully examines the feeling of the second childishness creeping in and subsequently succumbing to it in "So, we'll go no more a-roving" this sonnet in a similarly poignant fashion insists, demands that

 

MOTHERFUCKER TITTY-SUCKER TWO BALLED BITCH

YOUR MOTHER'S IN THE KITCHEN BAKING RED-HOT SHIT

FATHER IN JAIL

BROTHER IN HELL

SISTER OUTSIDE WITH HER PUSSY FOR SALE

 

2.

It was the first

day of March

at 5 p.m.,

warm as it was dark.

The sky began to

spit, washing away

the filth below.

Yet she stood there,

defiant, with cigarette

in one hand and

the other holding a

quart of beer.

She stood strong

and staggered proudly

as gusts of wind blew

her damaged hair

in her ravaged face

under the stoplight

on the corner of the street.

 

3.

 

4.

All communication must be adapted for convenient publication in a lightweight pamphlet or be supported by lie upon lie. Yes, it is indeed as if all communication must finally be adapted so that it can be presented in at most one hour before a gathering that in turn wastes a half hour in the noise of approval and disapproval and in the second half hour is too confused to be able to gather the ideas. Yet this is aspired to as the highest. Children are brought up to regard this as the highest: to be heard and be admired for an hour. In this way the coinage standard for being a human being is debased. No, to satisfy for an hour a haphazard gathering of people, the first the best, who themselves in turn have had neither the time nor the opportunity to think about the truth and therefore crave superficiality and half thoughts—if they would reward one with approval—that is the aspiration.

 

5.

And what can be said about art when one of the greatest things of human existence is relegated to the exclusive realm of luxury and elitism. This already sounds like sour grapes. To be sure there are a great many times throughout the year that here and there one can see an aesthetic triumph or a thoughtful gesture. But as a whole art itself is trivialized by its lesser parts, especially when its lesser parts are its driving ones. Its composition is too diffuse, such that a serious work is only with great difficulty discernable from its insipid context. But to complain is to be a sore loser—for to complain shows you care, and certainly art has been written off by most people for being rightly perceived, if viewed in the broad swath that it presents itself, as effusions of an irrelevant class. And the good work, when its goodness is protected by its hermetic nature, is so well protected that it alienates. They don’t need you, of course, that is part of its genius. But how good is good work when its goodness is buffeted by a rejection of the uninitiated or un-credentialed. Of course it is true that one bad apple ruins the bunch, so it is that one earnest simpleton is enough to discredit the most ironic, and thus best, artists. But it’s quite possible that irony can be done earnestly. And anyways, is there a place for sincerity when everything everywhere is fundamentally ignorant or disingenuous. At least one route is always available, as a supplicant, solicitously fellating or cunningling the geniuses of the moment, annihilating yourself in the process. Art’s fundamental irrelevance to most people is its protection; in other words, with a generalized criticism you are exposed as being a nobody, for those in the game are satisfied, either by having what they want or by clinging to the hope that by staying corrupted, their time will come. By not adhering to superficialities a million times removed from actual artistic expression, your only choice is to go it alone or align yourself with dilettantes. Contra going it alone, collaborative art making—an ineffable concept, perhaps originating in the quasi-collaborative efforts of Picasso and Braque, long codified into the art historical canon as the ideal working-situation for avant-gardism—is the ostensible route to historically relevant work. With the right cast, the more the merrier, and the worse the better. And dilettantes, especially when they take themselves seriously, are even worse than that. But—did you actually try or did you give up. Art is the allure, and the boring part is all the rest, except that the boring part is the most important. If the author were asked to cite examples, she would respectfully decline, well aware that this is a willful misrepresentation of a simplification of a complex situation.

6.

Dora Schulman, a shoe saleswoman who has lived in the neighborhood since the 1960s, left clutching a CD. “It’s a pity,” she said. “All the stores on my route are closing — first Tower Records, then Blockbuster, now this.”

 

1. David Garcia

2. J.D. Garcia

3. Evan Roth

4. Søren Kierkegaard

5. Jamie Fields

6. New York Times

 

2010