Thursday, June 18, 2009

WTF? department

From a recent 'Art&Education' press release:
One intuition motivating this series of talks has been the feeling that there is something deeply problematic about an approach that narrows the possibilities of engaging with art down to the procedures of decoding and encoding its inscription onto the symbolic order. That is: the idea that the primary task of art, as a strategical operation, was to provide conceptual legitimations (to satisfy or lay down the law, among other things) by constructing references that situate the work within an established economy of meaning. No matter how critical this approach may initially have intended to be, it has effectively proven to be coextensive with—and an involuntary ideological support of—an attitude towards art production that is indeed merely strategical and solely about plotting ways of inscribing a practice into the symbolic order, be it through the suicidal heroic mode of bringing the game of art to its logical conclusion by explicating its rules (old-school modernist conceptual) or through the somewhat more versatile mode of implicating a work within its given economies of referentiality as rarified secrets.
Translation: Maybe artists shouldn't be so freakin' obscure. Because I don't think anyone is paying attention anymore.


Spatula said...

Oh no! Not the dreaded inscribing of practice into the symbolic order! I work really hard to keep it out of my own artwork, but once in a while I slip up and before I know it, bam! An inscription! And only one if I am lucky!

Then I have to go and pour the ashes of Derrida books on my head until the feeling passes.

Oriane said...

That's a classic. It's coextensive with a big pile of poo, within its given economies of referentiality.

Oriane said...

And omg, that things goes on for many more paragraphs! It sure whets my appetite for the lectures.

Oriane said...

Sorry to keep babbling, but the really funny thing is that the upcoming final lecture is called

"Why are conceptual artists painting again? Because they think it's a good idea."

If they paint anything like this guy talks, it's a bad idea.

Pretty Lady said...

Oriane, I see you are on my same mailing list. They don't dare post any of this stuff on a website, for fear that someone will link to it and mock them mercilessly.

I could write a long, long, long screed on the 'conceptual artists painting again,' trope, but I feel that writing screeds about these people just encourages them.

Spatch, you crack me up.

Barak said...

This has GOT to be self mocking.

sus said...

Oh. my.
Glad I'm NOT on that mailing list...

Oriane said...

From the same peeps, I kid you not. Is this not the perfect title for their international project on graduate education?

Becoming Bologna
International project on Graduate Education in the Visual Arts

Becoming Bologna, a project in the context of the 53rd International Art Exhibition - La Biennale di Venezia, will be directed towards the current trend toward academization in art education. Becoming Bologna is again a project with two related parts: a public intervention and a parallel symposium.

Go to graduate school, become baloney! Steph, haven't you and I been saying this for years?

Pretty Lady said...

Barak, I am sorry to say that the people who speak and write this way are not only serious, but are actually incapable of self-mockery, or of comprehending humor in any form, including irony. In the course of their graduate educations their cognitive and perceptual capabilities are inexorably replaced by BS generation reflexes. They become both creatively and physiologically barren, and both males and females end their lives as perpetual opening-goers, sporting identical buzz cuts and obnoxious spectacles, drinking white wine and talking about 'conceptual liminality.'