Celebrating Easter with Krzysztof Wodiczko and Ewa Harabasz. Happy Easter!
Overtime I eat picked ginger, I think about him. He liked it a lot.
Albert Einstein said, “The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.”
From Dore Ashton’s obituary I published in Art News:
“I am a proud philistine,” Dore wrote on a small piece of paper she gave me at her home in New York. It was one of those evenings we used to spend together discussing literature, poetry, and art. Of course, she was provocative—there are very few art critics I know, or read, who have had such a rich and idiosyncratic knowledge of world cultures and arts. In fact, I should have just written “culture,” for Dore perceived all cultures as equally important—those associated with “art centers” and those with “art peripheries.” She constructed a different, non–geo-cultural, hierarchy for herself, one based on what she considered universal excellence in art, not as a newly invented, or reinvented, set of formal rules or style, but as something belonging to the long tradition of art making. She simply stood for a commitment to everyday hard work, erudition, and remaining true to her own sensibility. “Tinkering” (as a form of “bricolage”) was her methodology. Of course, as a deep thinker, she was never totally certain of the results of her arguments, of how successful or convincing they were, but she used to repeat a famous phrase in French: “Quand je me regarde je me désole, quand je me compare je me console.” (“When I look at myself I feel sorry, when I compare myself I console myself).”
Just to remind myself, as I am struggling with my new book: “Hey, what do you want? It was my first novel and it’s pretty fucking good, merge!” Albert Camus
Dore died yesterday; it snowed today.
Reading from “Tristes Tropiques”:
Gradually there had spread among the garrison an obsessional fever amounting almost to madness; and this had gained ground in spite of the fact that never had a shot been fired in anger or an enemy been sighted in the light of day. As for the islanders, their talk revealed similar preoccupations, although they put On Board Ship 29 them in more prosaic terms: Island s done for, if you ask me no more cod, they say, and so forth. Others held that Hitler was none other than Jesus Christ returned to earth to punish the white race for having neglected his teaching.
“in spite of advances in communication and communication technologies, our knowledge of each other – contrary to the common myth – remains highly superficial, most often non-existent. (…) We do not live in a global village, but rather in a global metropolis, a global train station inundated with a ‘crowd of loners’ (…) anxious people who would wish to know each other and develop close relationships.” Ryszard Kapuściński, Lapidarium V
Happy New Year!
From one of the most unpersuasive, “highly logical” art critics: “What matters in fiction is persuasiveness: what is compelling, what makes sense in the logic and language of the book itself. And that is my problem with Onetti. He proposes his narrator as a reflective, thoughtful person, but there is an uncontrolled contrast between psychological insights that are part of the novel’s structure, and those that are not noticed by the author or narrator. It’s the lack of control of that contrast that matters, because it undermines my confidence that the book is under the author’s control, that his imagination is his own possession, that he represents a perspective and an experience that is as reflective as he implies. Those issues are intrinsic to the form of the novel, and they’re enough to prevent me from wanting to read more of his work.”
People die, in the last few days as many in the past days. I don’t understood the public hysterias caused by the recent deaths of celebrities, expressed by people who didn’t know them at all. Mourning should be a private affair, not a spectacle, not a FB posting.
Happy Holidays from Warsaw
Henry Miller quoting Picasso in his essay on turning eighty: “One starts to get young at the age of sixty, and then it’s too late.”
From my essay on Pavel Kraus:
“It all might have begun back in 1969, with Kraus’s leaving his native Czechoslovakia for the United States at the age of 23, after the tragic end of the Prague Spring. Carrying with him a heavy suitcase weighting 44 pounds (20 of which belonged to the weight of his books in Czech), he arrived in Chicago on July 16, the same day the Apollo Eleven was launched into space. As we know, four days later humans landed on the moon for the first time in history.”
Danish light… with the former rector of The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Dr. Else Marie Bukdahl. Photo Lisbeth Bonde
I am in Istanbul. My last visit here was 10 years ago. Obviously, many things have changed, but one characteristic of the people here remains the same: kindness can turn into violence in a split of a second. I am staying at the same hotel, which was under the renovation back then, and it is still now.
A small pointing hand — known as a manicule — drawn in the margin of a book of classical rhetoric, owned and heavily annotated by John Dee. (Quintilian, ‘Institutionum oratoriarum,’ published Lyon, 1540) (© Royal College of Physicians / Mike Fear)
“Il y a peu de chose qui sépare l’horrible du comique (There is a little that separates the horrible from the comical),” Kundera quoted Eugène Ionesco in L’art du roman.
“De l’esquisse à l’oeuvre, le chemin se fait à genoux (From a draft to a finished work, the road is done on knees)” — Milan Kundera quoting Vladimir Holan in L’art du roman
Most of artists are stockers; they will not leave you until they get what they want. But, if they get (or don’t get) what they want-they also will be the first ones to damp you. (Any attraction has its limits.) It might be in the nature of the beast called art. Art critics will do the same.
A galleries asked me today for my opinion about her show. I answered her honestly, complementing, while mentioning that her show was slightly “slick” in installation for my taste.
She answered: “You are the critic.”
There comes a time when we realize that our life has not been that unique and yet we think about it more than ever.
A Sunday “fortune cookie”: I am afraid contemporary art looks increasingly like popular music: a few real talents becoming recognized; a small group of celebrities supported by a huge apparatus of their PR people .
Back from the summer in Greece, where silence is everything.
Some 30 years ago
I gave a lecture last week and I felt like I carried on my shoulders 20 years back in time and 10 ahead of me.
Yesterday, a farewell party to teaching full time for Ricki (Rose-Carol) Washton Long, my dissertation advisor and friend..
Sunday in Sao Paulo
Thank you Gabriela!
France is not like any other place, I must say. I am listening to a radio program on “fingering” as a form of rape.
It was a beautiful weekend here, still quite cold, but sunny. On Saturday, I went for a walk to a park nearby, where a small “Greek temple” stands in Paris high on a hill; it was shining bright under the blue sky.
It’s Monday morning. I am reading news: a deadly blast in Ankara killed at least 36; Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton keep leading the presidential race in the United States; “Setback for Merkel as Far right Makes Gains in Germany.” Behind the window Paris is waking up to a sound of garbage trucks and a raven screaming from afar what sounds like that eternal “nevermore,” again and again and again.
I just occurred to me that I don’t know anything about Icarus’s mother, and here is what I found:
Icarus’s Mother, by Sam Shepard, was presented at Caffe Cino on Cornelia Street. Here is the review of the play that Edward Albee wrote for the November 25, 1965, issue of The Village Voice.
For those of you who are busy people, facts first, implications later. (And by facts I mean, of course, nothing closer to the truth than my opinions.) Sam Shepard is one of the youngest and most gifted of the new playwrights working off-Broadway these days. The signature of his work is its unencumbered spontaneity—the impression Shepard gives of inventing drama as a form each time he writes a play. His new theatre piece, “Icarus’s Mother,” is presently on view at the Caffe Cino. Sad to say, it gives the impression of being a mess.
Implications and general ruminations (for those of you who have the time): The playwright in the United States doesn’t have a particularly healthy environment to work in these days; audiences, by and large, think less for themselves than they might; not all of our theatre critics are sufficiently informed about the past or tuned in to the contemporary; the majority of our serious playwrights find they must do battle with exterior as well as interior devils; as a society, we tend to judge quickly and superficially.
The value of off-Broadway and its cafe adjuncts lies not only in its enthusiasm for sustaining plays without which the uptown theatre is unreal and preposterous—the work of Beckett, Genet, Pinter, Claudel, deGhelderode, for example—but, as well, in offering new, experimental playwrights (such as Sam Shepard) a proper ambiance in which to try things out, over-reach, fail and, if they have the stuff, finally succeed.
If Shepard’s new theatre piece, “Icarus’s Mother,” fails to please, by which I mean fails to engage one, the failure is of no importance so long as the piece is merely one random experiment, one spontaneous throw-off, one way-stone on the path toward the creation and recreation of theatre. If, on the other hand, this play signals, as I have the disquieting suspicion it does, the beginnings of a premature crystallization of Shepard’s theatre aesthetic, then the failure of the play is a good deal more serious.
I have no way of telling you what “Icarus’s Mother” is about, but, then again, up until now, at any rate, what Shepard’s plays are about is a great deal less interesting than how they are about it. His “Up to Thursday,” for example, was about a boy about to be drafted, but in that play the resonance, the overtone was far more interesting and important than the note. Usually, the sparks which rise and shower in Shepard’s plays are far more pertinent than the nature of the stone to which he touches his talent. In “Icarus’s Mother” though—oddly enough a play in which fireworks are an important motif—the sparks which rise and shower seem arbitrary and unmotivated, we are not allowed to assume we know (or sense, rather) the nature of the experience, and we are forced to look for the touchstone, and we cannot find it.
This is the first of Shepard’s plays in which I have felt he was merely levitating, and it is also, curiously enough, the first of Shepard’s plays in which I have felt that he was inhibitedly more concerned with the note than with the resonances. It is the nature of Shepard’s art, so far, that while his plays are, of course, ABOUT something, we must SENSE his intention—his subject, if you like—and react through intuition. In any but the most didactic play it is uninvolving to have to know the nature of the concern at once in order to participate in the reality of it. In a Sam Shepard play it is fatal.
Of course, “Icarus’s Mother” may be about nothing at all. It may be stream of consciousness pure and private, or it may be calculatedly random and unintegrated, but I doubt it. I suspect that it is very much about something, but it is Shepard’s way that if we have to ask ourselves what it is, then it becomes nothing. I like to think that this play is nothing more than a blunder, a misstep along the way, but if Shepard is beginning to super-impose message, or symbol, or story, or, indeed, naturalistic motivation on the existing, very great “reality” of his plays, he must start taking into account the very different artistic responsibilities these usually very normal elements impose on him.
For whatever the reason, the spontaneity and inevitability that are the best things about Shepard’s work are lacking in “Icarus’s Mother.” Having only seen the play, not read it, I have no way of knowing if this may be, in any part, a fault in the direction by Michael Smith. Smith is one of our few enlightened critics and is himself a playwright. He knows it is the function of the director to illuminate the playwright’s intention and I would imagine that he and Shepard worked together on the project and are convinced that the wattage is fine.
The play’s stage manager is Fred Katz. The lighting, by Johnny Dodd, was very effective, and the sound—some of it unquestionably the loudest in recent theatrical history—was by Francis Fisher. It was very nice, too.
The actors were John Kramer, Lee Worley, Cynthia Harris, James Barbosa, and John A. Coe. They … well, how can I put it most accurately? … they seemed unconvinced and detached.
Life is quite an unpleasant business, but it is not so very hard to make it wonderful. For which purpose it is not enough that you should win 200,000 roubles in a lottery, or receive the order of the White Eagle, or marry a beautiful woman—all these blessings are transitory and are liable to become a habit. But to feel continuously happy, even in moments of distress and sorrow, the following is needed:
(a) To be satisfied with your present state; and
(b) To rejoice in the knowledge that things might have been much worse.
—Anton Chekhov, Life is Wonderful
Back from Cuba, back in time: Wifredo Lam
I think I start to understand the meaning of the phrase “Silence=Death” on another level.
It’s highly disturbing to me. I had found this article posted today [http://www.irishexaminer.com/examviral/celeb-life/turkish-author-orhan-pamuk-brings-his-museum-of-innocence-to-london-378280.html], while searching for any news about the ongoing persecution of the Turkish intellectuals, which I engaged in after receiving very sad news from one of our colleagues in Turkey that her boyfriend’s father has been killed.
And he says: He said: “Museums are trying to represent the nation, the big story, rather than the simple citizen everyman.”
There is this beautiful sentence in Camus’s “The Stranger”: “I looked up at the mass of signs and stars in the night sky and laid myself open for the first time to the benign indifference of the world.”
It’s always good to hear from Rio de Janeiro
Way to be an artist: Michael Neff brings Suspended Forest, a forest-filled room of discarded Christmas trees collected from the streets of Brooklyn, to Knockdown Center for the month of January.
January 2, 2016
After visiting Fukushima, Japan:
“Dreams, memories, the sacred–they are all alike in that they are beyond our grasp. Once we are even marginally separated from what we can touch, the object is sanctified; it acquires the beauty of the unattainable, the quality of the miraculous. Everything, really, has this quality of sacredness, but we can desecrate it at a touch. How strange man is! His touch defiles and yet he contains the source of miracles.”
― Yukio Mishima, “Spring Snow”
Happy Holiday season to all of you. All the best in 2016
Krzysztof Zarebski, “assisted” home performance
The weakness of art
News from Japan
― Italo Calvino, Six Memos For the Next Millennium
Dore Ashton’s hands
It’s been a long trip around the world-NYC-London-Paris-Moscow-Fukushima-Shanghai-Tokyo-NYC. Just got home.
Over my breakfast I suddenly realized that in the crowded dining room (more than 100 people) here, no single person used their cell phone, a tablet, or any other electronic device–people, old and young, ate and talked to each other sitting along long tables. I am the only non-Japanese person in this place and it’s autumn in Fukushima.
Fukushima this morning
Literally minutes before we found out we were in a war zone in Paris
Back from Moscow to Paris
Robert’s garden in Clapham Common in London this morning:
“The popular element “feels” but does not always know or understand; the intellectual element “knows” but does not always understand and in particular does not always feel.”
― Antonio Gramsci
Celebrating birthday last night.
It might have been a pure coincidence: Going to pick up my new glasses from an optician on University Place earlier today, I passed a homeless-looking man who looked to me like Slavoj Žižek. Or was it Slavoj Žižek, who looked like a homeless man in New York?
The art of losing isn’t hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster.”
Elizabeth Bishop, “On Art”
Elizabeth Bishop, “Tombstones,” watercolor, gouache and ink
The Pope is in town.
Walter Benjamin wrote on a postcard:
“On Siena: Ritual teaches us: the church did not build itself up by overcoming the love between men and women but rather homosexual love. That the priests do not sleep with the choir boys is the miracle of the mass (cathedral at Siena July 28, 1929).”
Returning from Oaxaca. Photo PAC
Today at the Jewish Museum in New York
30 years ago I moved for good to NYC from Paris.
Great fun in Mexico, with Santiago Zabala, Juan Ayala, Eleanor Heartney, and Patrick Charpenel
It’s interesting, Walter Benjamin writes this:
“The tradition of the oppressed teaches us that the “emergency situation” in which we live is the rule. We must arrive at a concept of history which corresponds to this. Then it will become clear that the task before us is the introduction of a real state of emergency; and our position in the struggle against Fascism will thereby improve. Not the least reason that the latter has a chance is that its opponents, in the name of progress, greet it as a historical norm. – The astonishment that the things we are experiencing in the 20th century are “still” possible is by no means philosophical. It is not the beginning of knowledge, unless it would be the knowledge that the conception of history on which it rests is untenable.”
And, then, he proceeds to talking about art and angels.
A long discussion with Juraj about contemporary art, while visiting two exhibitions: “Picasso Sculpture” and “Transmissions: Art in Eastern Europe and Latin America, 1960–1980.” It’s fantastic to see all those Picasso sculptures in one place. The “Transmissions” show is overwhelming: an organized chaos, bot artistic and curatorial. I am burning out–too much to look at: The only way I can maintain my enthusiasm for art is to limit my visits to museums and galleries to one, maximum twice a month…
Work by Edward Krasiński.
And a soul
if it is to know itself
into its own soul:
the stranger and enemy, we’ve seen him in the mirror.
—George Seferis, “Mythistorema”
By Luc-Francois Granier (via FB)
From an e-mail I wrote to a friend in London:
“I have just realized: I didn’t have great professors to teach me. I had very devoted teachers, some of them quite weird, but hardly brilliant. In fact, the more brilliant they tried to appear, the less brilliant I found them. They were just too fatherly (or motherly). Perhaps I was too suspicious of the academia and its lofty hierarchies, with students being treated like sheep. I always yearned to be a shepherd, or at least a “black sheep.”
We must remember
January: the Wolf Moon, February: the Snow Moon, March: the Worm Moon, April: the Pink Moon, May: the Flower Moon, June: the Strawberry Moon, July: the Buck Moon, August: the Sturgeon Moon, September: the Harvest Moon, October: the Hunter’s Moon, November: the Beaver Moon, December: the Cold Moon. And there is also a month-free “Blue Moon,” like the one tonight.
My Mnemosyne Atlas
July 25 (Saturday)
My definition of an old-time intellectual: “One who works on weekends as much as on week days.”
“We who had nothing will school them in serenity”–Giorgos Seferis
AICA’s congress in London in October 2015
Days here can be similar and yet they are never the same…sometimes they are silver, sometimes gold…–but they are never gray (no Photoshop needed)
This puts things in perspective: https://medium.com/@gavinschalliol/thomas-piketty-germany-has-never-repaid-7b5e7add6fff
A great day for Greece and us all.
“Days to come are the wisest witnesses.
It is better for a man to speak well of the gods; he is less to” -Pindar
My dear friend’s mother died in France a few days ago. He shared the sad news with me this afternoon, which made me realize that, in the time of facing death, it is important to stress the goodness of those who remain (if we can).
“Every morning brings us the news of the globe, and yet we are poor in noteworthy stories.”
Back, and back to Aegina.
Going through my old e-mails, I found this poem a friend sent to me from London:
‘I am not I’
I am this one
walking beside me whom I do not see,
whom at times I manage to visit,
and whom at other times I forget;
who remains calm and silent while I talk,
and forgives, gently, when I hate,
who walks where I am not,
who will remain standing when I die.
You must watch it
The endless postings on FB and endless reviews from the Venice Biennale makes me see the city tiny and insignificant, still beautiful though
“To speak is to show too much consideration for others. Fish and Oscar Wilde both died via the mouth.”
Giovanni Canavesio, Jugement Dernier – Damnés (Last Judgement – The Damned Souls [detail]), 1492.
Art historian Piotr Piotrowski passed away at the age of 63. The last time I saw him was during the AICA Congress in Slovakia in 2013, where he gave a keynote speech. I remember him the most when meeting at his office at the National Museum in Warsaw, which he run for a year or so. We talked, among other things, about his book “In the Shadow of Yalta: Art and the Avant-garde in Eastern Europe, 1945-1989,” which I praised but also criticized for perpetuating the image of Easter Europeans as victims; I reminded him that they have also victimized other people. In 2010 the museum hosted a show “Ars Homo Erotica,” which created a lot of controversy.
My views of Ursula von Rydingsvard’s work might be occasionally conflicted, but I must say I admire the consistency of her vision.
This work will be presented in Venice during the Venice Biennale.
I will be back in Paris soon:
Day and night
I always dream with open eyes
And on top of the foaming waves
Of the wide turbulent sea,
And on the rolling
And merrily riding on the gentle neck
Of a mighty lion,
Monarch of my heart,
I always see a floating child
Who is calling me!
Celebrating Birthdays: Sooja Kim and Krzysztof Wodiczko
At the new Whitney
At the new Whitney
In today’s mail, a photo from Elzbieta Dzikowska:
Krzysztof, Krystyna, Wanda and Roman
“If work and leisure are soon to be subordinated to this one utopian principle – absolute busyness – then utopia and melancholy will come to coincide: an age without conflict will dawn, perpetually busy – and without consciousness.” ―Günter Grass, “Diary of a Snail” 1972
I am reading about “Ariel,” and, suddenly, recall a student of mine at an art school with that name. Apparently she was a former stripper and, in my opinion, a lousy art student. In fact, she forced me to quit mentoring art students after I questioned her work and was confronted by the woman who run the program, who judged me unreasonable. Today, I am grateful to both of them for doing that.
Robert Storr attacks Jerry Saltz, Roberta Smith, Dave Hickey. “Art criticism sucks”:
Someone posted on FB: “it’s like a fight in a monastery.” Yes, it is, and, as we know, the “monks”, or preachers, can be truly cruel defending their truths.
I don’t know if I like his face (for some reason I think it is sort of Borgesian) in the photo below, I am not even sure I like his movies, but I like the humanity of his long life.
Manoel de Oliveira passed away at the age of 106.
A reminder how fragile our lives are, not because of wars, terrorist attacks or natural disasters, but a simple human error, a random accident (mixed with some greed) that could happen anywhere. The blast shook my building only a block away from the scene of accident with great force, which made me think about another danger from the past. Then, I heard the noise made by the fire engines quickly approaching the neighborhood. I immediately turned on the radio and learned from the news that several buildings were in flame around the corner. I closed the windows because the smoke from the scene started to be unbearable. When, I left my building for a dinner with a friend a few hours later, the area around my building was sealed by the police. I had to ask a policemen for a permission to enter my street in get back to my place. So far, one death has been reported: a young woman died driving a car in front of the building. There are many injured, some seriously. A sad event. A small tragedy–just a reminder.
His 96th Birthday
in the geological sense –
strange sedimentary stones, inscrutable cracks!
If I were you I’d keep aside
an oversize pair of winter underwear
Do not go naked into that good night
And in the meantime
keep calm and warm and dry
No use stirring ourselves up prematurely
Move forward with dignity
hand in vest
Don’t get emotional
And death shall have no dominion
There’s plenty of time my darling
Are we not still young and easy?
My approach to installing an exhibition has been purely intuitive. Former Director of the Guggenheim Museum in New York Hilla Rebay had a secret (quite Mondrianesque) method for installing a harmonized exhibition:
When life imitates art much better than art imitates life and art imitates art:
Goofing around with Orlan, Daniele, and Henry at the Mini Palais.
Breakfast photos with Ewa Harabasz and Krzysztof Wodiczko
A lovely evening with Jean-Clarance Lambert, Janine and Lorenzo Vigas at Les Editeurs.
“This is the men’s world”, according to Elaine de Kooning. Here shows is opening today at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington D.C.:
I met very good artists who were, to put it gently, simpleminded; I met some bad artists who were smart. He was very good and very smart.
I asked Jon to design this for my bathroom and now I am laughing. It’s being made.
Videocracy, 2009, a documentary film by Eric Gandini about Italian television and its impact on Italian culture and politics, and about Silvio Berlusconi’s powerful position on all of these. Gandini coined the phrase “The Evilness of Banality” to describe the cultural phenomenon of Berlusconismo, thus making a word play on Hanna Arendt’s “Banality of Evil”.
This year passes 100 years from the death of Stanislaw Witkiewicz, who had a son Stanislaw Ignacy Witkiewicz, better known as “Witkacy.”
Erich Mendelsohn might be the most famous person born in Olsztyn, my native city. He designed a a small building – a house to wash dead bodies before burials during an Ashkenazi ritual act of purification called tahara – which was erected in 1911-12. I used to play near that house with my cousin Ewa, when we were kids. That building still exists, but the adjacent cemetery is long gone.
A good line from “Citizen Four”: “You asked me why I picked you. I didn’t. You did.”
February 23/24 in Europe
Here is a lovely letter written by Anton Chekhov:
A letter from Anton Chekhov to V. A. Tihonov, dated February 23, 1892. Chekhov had just turned thirty-two at the time. Translated from the Russian by Constance Garnett.
You are mistaken in thinking you were drunk at Shtcheglov’s name-day party. You had had a drop, that was all. You danced when they all danced, and your jigitivka on the cabman’s box excited nothing but general delight. As for your criticism, it was most likely far from severe, as I don’t remember it. I only remember that Vvedensky and I for some reason roared with laughter as we listened to you.
Do you want my biography? Here it is.
I was born in Taganrog in 1860. I finished the course at Taganrog high school in 1879. In 1884 I took my degree in medicine at the University of Moscow. In 1888 I gained the Pushkin prize. In 1890 I made a journey to Sahalin across Siberia and back by sea. In 1891 I made a tour in Europe, where I drank excellent wine and ate oysters. In 1892 I took part in an orgy in the company of V. A. Tihonov at a name-day party. I began writing in 1879. The published collections of my works are: “Motley Tales,” “In the Twilight,” “Stories,” “Surly People,” and a novel, “The Duel.” I have sinned in the dramatic line too, though with moderation. I have been translated into all the languages with the exception of the foreign ones, though I have indeed long ago been translated by the Germans. The Czechs and the Serbs approve of me also, and the French are not indifferent. The mysteries of love I fathomed at the age of thirteen. With my colleagues, doctors, and literary men alike, I am on the best of terms. I am a bachelor. I should like to receive a pension. I practice medicine, and so much so that sometimes in the summer I perform post-mortems, though I have not done so for two or three years. Of authors my favorite is Tolstoy, of doctors Zaharin.
All that is nonsense though. Write what you like. If you haven’t facts make up with lyricism.”
Slavoj Zizek posted today:
“It is commonly said that there exist three distinct subtypes of compartmentalization which aptly divide our awareness of the external world. First, there are the “known knowns”, things we know that we know. “known unknowns” and “unknown unknowns” follow suit in a similar fashion. Then, what of the forgotten fourth category, that of unknown knowns? (a type of knowledge forbidden, exclusively, from knowing itself) It is this category that to me represents the Freudian unconscious, the embodiment of the disavowed beliefs and suppositions that we are not even aware of adhering to ourselves, but which nonetheless determine our acts and feelings.”
It’s quite consistent with his dialectical thinking and fun to read. It’s the world and I. I wonder what would happen if we talk about “know knows known,” etc….
On another note:
“Boredom: the desire for desires.”
– Leo Tolstoy
Tomorrow is the Oscars night. In Poland, “Ida”!, “Ida”!, “Ida”! There are so many problems with this movie, which, as far as I know, a very few Poles are willing to address… But, so is the situation with other nominated films (this year and in the past) as well, so why to single out “Ida” as an example of bad cinema? An American critic who reviewed the movie commented: “None of this is to say that “Ida” is bad, it’s actually quite lovely. “Ida”deserves the spot it will hold on a lot of Top 10 lists for 2014. But the need to frame it as pop-art, to insist that anyone could love it, is a peculiarity of film and a mania amongst critics that would look bonkers in the world of books.” In a broader context, this is yet another film that has gained popular attention for “superficial reasons,” or it’s not so lovely?
I finally found a vary good expression for many intellectuals who sign all kinds of petitions without giving proper consideration to the broader circumstances -“useful idiots.” The expression comes from Lenin (sic!) to describe weak liberals used by cynical regimes for their own ends.
Pyotr Kropotkin’s response: “Lenin is not comparable to any revolutionary figure in history. Revolutionaries have had ideals. Lenin has none.”
There are two quick ways to receive news these days in the US: as propaganda (NBC, CBS, ABC, PBS, BBC) and as entertainment (NBC, CBS, ABC, PBS, BBC), and I suspect it’s quite similar elsewhere. There are two principal ways to receive art news: as propaganda and entertainment. The problem with the latter one is that it is, unfortunately, even more “unprocessed ” and trivial. So what’s left? I am grateful to some of my FB friends sending news that way, which , otherwise, I would never receive. For that, I will remain on FB, even if surveyed. And, I don’t worry about being subjected to undesired advertisements–nowadays I need a few material (and even “intellectual”) products to keep me going on.
Maria Bethânia celebrated 50 years on stage last year.
And a poem by a poet, who passed away.
She’s Not Gone
on a day you no longer
remember. The years pass,
and she becomes the mother
you never had, the older
sister smoking before breakfast,
the first friend. She lies back
on the worn sofa in the heat
of summer and shares a season
of baseball. When you are
twelve she explains the world,
how the people were sold
down the river, how someone
will always work and waste
away to these essential bones,
muscles, and tendons. She explains
your brother, who at sixteen
needs two clean shirts a day
and will grow to command, she
explains you, who will never,
and she blesses you with a hand
mussing your hair. One day
she is gone, over forty and she
has fallen in love again,
and love has taken her off
to a man with one leg
and no prospects. A postcard
from California and then
a silence that lasts.
The ironing board waits
in the corner, the worn black
shoes are kicked back into
the closet, her yellowing slip
sags on the back of her chair
until your mother, cursing,
tears it into rags and garbage.
You will look and find her
in the long jaws of other
women, in the hard eyes
that can gleam without hope,
you will find her again
and again because with
two open hands, with a voice
that said anything, with
a new smile for each
new loss, she showed you
a world she could die for.
My friend Yanis Varufakis in today’s Times on the situation in and outside of Greece:
“But what if this brings your people much pain? I am asked. Surely you must be bluffing.
The problem with this line of argument is that it presumes, along with game theory, that we live in a tyranny of consequences. That there are no circumstances when we must do what is right not as a strategy but simply because it is … right.”
For some inexplicable reasons, I have always thought that young artists don’t have babies, not often, or when they have them, they keep them “out of our sight” until they are children. But now, with FB, I can see quite a few pictures of babies, especially those of my former students from MICA where I taught for several years quite a while ago. It might be that the time (biological and other) has been ripe for them. Perhaps it also says something about the students MICA attracts to their programs, about their background and their outlook on life and art… I might also say something more general about how recent graduates of art school see their life in relation to art, but for that to comment I would need more evidence.
Following postings on my FB page, I realize what the old Cardinal Richelieu said cannot be ignored:
“God save me from my friends – I can protect myself from my enemies”
A drawing I made near 40 years ago (at the age of 18):
With Germany and France being in charge of the stability in Europe, we might need to draft a definition of “political simulacra”
Christian Viveros-Fauna in good “old” The Village Voice: “There are two ways to review a popular art exhibition today: alone and with everybody else. That goes double for a fashionable show like the Museum of Modern Art’s “The Forever Now: Contemporary Painting in an Atemporal World,” which opened to large crowds in December.” He says a lot in these two sentences…
A link to the article: http://www.villagevoice.com/2015-02-11/art/the-forever-now-moma/
Preparing for my Russian class, examining the cracks in painting:
Patriarch Kirill I of the Russian Orthodox Church speaking during a bishops’ conference on February 2, 2015: “I recognize the place of Malevich, with his Black Square, in contemporary art, because this black and frightening square is a genuine reflection of what was in the soul of this Malevich. And it reflects not only Malevich, it reflects the spirit of the era.” Poor “Black Square”
The French artist Luc-François Granier (whom I don’t know personally) has been posting my portraits he makes on FB.
Here is the latest one, in which I look young and possessed (I think)
My mind wonders in many directions (perhaps wanders too);
It’s winter, though on some days it seems not so. The war is scarcely
finished but spirit quickly moves: a poster
fairly printed in black on white evokes the crimes committed, ours.
a poem by Stefan Brecht, from 8th Avenue Poems, Spuyten Duyvil 2006
“Greece, like Germany, is a strong, visceral state of mind. If nations were measured by the salience of their culture – its bite, its saltiness, its addiction to beauty – Hellenic culture would stand equal to its Teutonic counterpart. And that is what makes the economic clash of will so visceral, too.”
What I wrote yesterday (see below) needs further thought:
“Philosophical” ideology critique is truly the heir of a great satirical tradition, in which the motif of unmasking, exposing, baring has served for aeons now as a weapon. But modern ideology critique—according to our thesis has ominously cut itself off from the powerful traditions of laughter in satirical knowledge. – Peter Sloterdijk
What does it say about our present art world? Jerry Saltz “farts” on FB and 1000 people immediately “like” it.
An answer from Slavoj Zizek:
“A man walks into a coffee shop and immediately requests to be given a cup of coffee, black, and without any of the cream.
To which the barista replies, “I’m sorry but we are currently out of cream, so perhaps you will settle for a coffee without the sugar instead?”
I believe this joke to be absolutely essential to understanding how modern capitalism works today.”
Back in Rome (with no apparent reasons)
“The Rothko Chapel is a sacred space because of precisely this capacity it has to re-bind, to re-balance, to re-store, to re-inspire the spirit in its simple and essential gesture of darkness held in light. Of art held in spirit. Of spirit held in life and the living of life. It is a truly humane space for humans to find themselves in.
Glamour is a word derived from the Scots, meaning ‘dangerous magic.’
The Rothko Chapel is glamorous beyond any glamour known to any Highland witch. It is a light that never goes out.”
– Tilda Swinton, from the acceptance speech of a Rothko Chapel Visionary Award, 2014
Unrelated: A passage from Gertrude Stein’s “Tender Buttons” 1914 and a photo from a current exhibition at The Cooper Union
“The sister was not a mister. Was this a surprise. It was. The conclusion came when there was no arrangement. All the time that there was a question there was a decision. Replacing a casual acquaintance with an ordinary daughter does not make a son.”
“Art News” on line (artnet.com) has just published a list of the most influential recent articles on art. See: http://news.artnet.com/art-world/this-months-10-most-talked-about-art-essays-238803
As Number 2 they have listed the text of Yanis Varoufakis (recently elected Finance Minister of Greece), which appeared in the summer 2014 special issue of influential publication “The Brooklyn Rail ” devoted to the state of art criticism in Europe, which I edited , and with the contribution of the art critics and artists from 25 European counties, among them many members of AICA (see: http://www.brooklynrail.org/special/ART_CRIT_EUROPE/message-from-the-editor/from-the-guest-editor).
“I was told that at one time there had been benches standing on the path to the lighthouse, but they had been forced to take them away because, while out strolling, the convicts and settled exiles had written on them and had carved with their knives filthy lampoons and all sorts of obscenities. There are a lot of free lovers of this so-called ‘wall literature’ too, but, in penal servitude, the cynicism surpasses all limits and absolutely no comparison may be made with it. Here, not only benches and the walls of backyards, but even the love letters, are revolting. It is remarkable that a man will write and carve various abominations on a bench while at the same time he is feeling lost, abandoned and profoundly unhappy.”
Anton Chekhov, “The Sakhalin Islands”
Jozef Czapski’s copy of Nietzsche’s “Ecce Homo”
“It is said that Piero de’ Medici, who had been left heir to his father Lorenzo, often used to send for Michelangelo, with whom he had been intimate for many years, when he wanted to buy antiques such as cameos and other engraved stones. And one winter, when a great deal of snow fell in Florence, he had him make in his courtyard a statue of snow, which was very beautiful…”
Vasari, Life of Michelangelo
Anew photo: Credit: João Enxuto/The Cooper Union
There are many things one can say about Facebook. One of the most intriguing ones to me is how people “position” themselves vis-à-vis you when they chose to click “Like” or remain silent. Just watch.
“What writers influenced me as a young man? Chekhov!
As a dramatist? Chekhov!
As a story writer? Chekhov!
D. H. Lawrence, too, for his spirit, of course, for his understanding of sexuality, of life in general.” – Tennessee Williams
Happy Birthday Mr. Chekhov
of monologue I refer to never happens.”
― Henry Miller, The Colossus of Maroussi
I must say I find this highly disturbing (follow the link):
Photo from the WSJ
With Olga and Wiktor in Lima a year ago:
A moment of reflection:
(Memorial flowers placed by visitors lay on the floor of the gas chamber in the Auschwitz concentration camp. (Getty Images))
Woke up this morning hearing the voice of my friend Yanis taking about the future of Greece on the BBC radio. Greece is hoping… Sunny days in Athens
“What Syriza stands for in this context is what Spain’s newly elected Republican government stood for in the early 1930s at a time when the Nazis on the march to winning elections in Germany. For the moment – at least until Podemos reclaims the mantle at the end of this year – a democratic Greece under Syriza would represent what democratic Spain represented for the international left in the 1930s. The prospects for a different outcome are much better, provided there is strong international support for giving a Syriza government the breathing room it would need.” — Leo Panitch
President Theodore Roosevelt about Duchamp’s “Nude Descending a Staircase, No. 2,” 1912:
“Take the picture which for some reason is called ‘A Naked Man Going Down Stairs.’ There is in my bathroom a really good Navajo rug which, on any proper interpretation of the Cubist theory, is a far more satisfactory and decorative picture. Now, if, for some inscrutable reason, it suited somebody to call this rug a picture of, say, ‘A Well-Dressed Man Going Up a Ladder,’ the name would fit the facts just about as well as in the case of the Cubist picture of the ‘Naked Man Going Down Stairs.’ From the standpoint of terminology each name would have whatever merit inheres in a rather cheap straining after effect; and from the standpoint of decorative value, of sincerity, and of artistic merit, the Navajo rug is infinitely ahead of the picture.”
I picked the age according to my stature. Going south, we held dust over the steppe; The tall weeds smoked; the grasshopper made mischief, Touched horseshoes with its whisker, and prophesied, And threatened me with destruction, like a monk. I fastened my fate to the saddle; And now, in the coming times, like a boy, I raise myself up halfway in the stirrups.
Great E.E. Cummings traveling to Russia:
“stutter the director’s. Of course, he is nyet.
‘Später’ assures a nonmansecretaryorsomething.
‘Passport’ I insist.
‘Später’ he assures.
I go away—today—Odessa (insist).
I understand—good—later (assures).
NOT ‘zahvtrah’? (very most suspiciously)
comfortingly, And How!, nonononono; this
afternoon; one hour…
he will return—you will have passport. YES!”
– Eimi, 1933
Thinking about my next week’s class:
“He who makes a distinction between the manual work of the worker or the common man and clouds of rhetoric remains stultified. The fabrication of clouds is a human work of art that demands as much – neither more nor less – labour and intellectual attention as the fabrication of shoes or locks.” p.37
– Jacques Rancière, The Ignorant Schoolmaster: Five Lessons in Intellectual Emancipation (1981).
Back to teaching, after 4 years of leave, with more doubts than ever. (Just watched ‘Ivory Tower’, a documentary about the alarming state of higher education in the US, with a long section devoted to the current situation at The Cooper Union.)
Two years ago No, Chilean drama film directed by Pablo Lorrain was nominated for an Oscar in the foreign film category. It is based on the unpublished play El Plebiscito, written by Antonio Skarmeta. Mexican actor Gael Garcia Bernal plays René, an in-demand advertising man working in Chile in the late 1980s on. In 1988 he supervises the advertising campaign to oust dictator Augusto Pinochet. Alfredo Castro, whom I just met in Santiago, brilliantly plays his boss loyal to Pinochet.
“arteallimite.com,” Chile, January 2015
Marek Bartelik: “La crítica de arte no es una profesión como tal, es más como un llamado”15/01/2015
Sushi in Santiago with the Vigas family (Janine, Lorenzo, Dilia and Marianne) and great actor Alfredo Castro
I occasionally like to disagree with Slavoj Žižek, but in his comments in response to the attack on “Charlie Hebdo” he is absolutely right:
“What Max Horkheimer had said about Fascism and capitalism already back in 1930s – those who do not want to talk critically about capitalism should also keep quiet about Fascism – should also be applied to today’s fundamentalism: those who do not want to talk critically about liberal democracy should also keep quiet about religious fundamentalism. (“The New Statement,” 10 January 2015)
Art and activism: For the Cuban artist Tania Bruguera to “finish” her recent piece in Havana, she needs to come back to the US and stage the same action in front of the White House, or another high profile site here… Otherwise, it’s art and propaganda.
January 3, 2015
Happy New year to those who read these words:
Tagore was around 55 when he wrote this: “Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky.”
Trying to picture Bangladesh: Boys at the beach
We may call them “homeless books”:
two signs: Robert Indiana and Santiago Sierra:
from the window I saw autumn
inside I saw nothing,
an emptiness in not only emptiness
Hugo Mujica, “What the Embrace Embraces,” transl. by Joan Lindgren (San Francisco, CA: Coimbra Editions, 2008).
A long discussion about the movie “Miasto 44” (“Warsaw44”) with a few friends after we saw it last night at the Tribeca Film Center. A story of the Warsaw Uprising told by young people (the director, Jan Komasa, is in his early thirties, the leading actor Jozef Pawlowski, is 24). A movie to remember, not as a masterpiece of Polish cinema, but as an insight into the way Polish history is remembered and interpreted by young Poles, and the Poles in general. Lately the failed uprising has been a subject of a close scrutiny because a growing number of people believe that the mostly young insurgents – most of whom wee killed – were also victims of political manipulations on the sides of the Polish government in exile, not just of the German and Russian war machines. The movie is presented as being about “the time of love” during the war, one of its aims – to put a human face on suffering. And that’s where it is highly interesting, not only because it talks about people falling in love regardless of the situation around them, but also that the extreme situations might, in fact, make the desire to love highly urgent and “unorthodox.” As always, small episodes, what happens at the edge of the frame (as Derrida would say) are as fascinating as what constitutes the main narrative, for example a scene with a group of Jewish prisoners being found in a large closet in the German headquarters, and then liberated by the insurgents (one of them wears a pink triangle). The movie is very homoerotic, not because it contains gay scenes (except one: two young women kissing for a brief moment, which is disguised as sharing the smoke of one cigarette between each other), but because of its focusing on the male body (the main actor has the body of young Mark Wahlberg, and so do other young men in the film, and the film makes sure we see it). It is a very contemporary movie, with some scenes resembling those in video games and a collage of music which has little if nothing to do with the time period, for example Czeslaw Niemen’s “Dziwny jest ten swiat” (“Strange Is This World”). With that music in the background, the movie becomes even more intriguing, as if the time between 1944 and 2014 has been compressed, being both fragmented and continuous, with history and fantasy overlapping and revealing their meaning on the borders of the picture frames.
John Cage’s recipe:
Get a good chicken not spoiled by agribusiness. Place in Rohmertopf (clay baking dish with cover) with giblets. Put a smashed clove of garlic & a slice of fresh ginger between legs and wings and breasts. Squeeze the juice of two & three lemons over the bird. Then an equal amount of tamari. Cover, place in cold oven turned up to 220°. Leave for 1 hour. Then uncover for 15 minutes, heat on, to brown. Now I cook at 170°, 30 minutes to the pound. Or use hot mustard and cumin seeds instead of ginger. Keep lemon, tamari or Braggs and garlic. Instead of squeezing the lemon, it may be quartered then chopped fine in a Cuisinart with the garlic & ginger (or garlic, cumin & mustard). Add tamari. The chicken & sauce can be placed on a bed of carrots (or sliced 3/4-inch thick bitter melon obtainable in Chinatown)
December 10 (Human Rights Day 2014)
“There was no DNA at the time; you’ll grant me that, right? So when one was tasked with dismantling a corpse, you had to ask which are the body-parts that will help identify who the person was. Teeth and the fingers alone. We pulled the teeth and cut off the fingers. The hands, no. And that’s how we made the bodies unidentifiable.”
— Lieutenant Colonel Paulo Malhaes
Back in time and space: to the 13th century China,
“Nine Dragons” by Chen Rong (fragment)
Warning to young critics and artists
Günter Grass to Witold Gombrowicz: “I am sorry Sir, but the moment more than six philosophers are mentioned at once my sister, present here, suffers from a nervous coughing.”
I their castle of art in Miami, with Rosa and Carlos de la Cruz
“I don’t go out, I hardly ever leave here,” admits Hockney, as we take our seats in the studio. He is dressed as plainly as his forbidding gates – dark grey cardigan, slate-grey pinstripe trousers and, incongruously, considering his disdain for all exercise, Skechers running shoes – again in contrast to the vibrant work that surrounds him. “I go out to the dentist, the doctor, the bookstore and the marijuana store, because you have to go to each of those yourself. And that’s it. I never go out because I’m much too deaf really. I can hear you now, but if there were two people speaking quite quietly, I wouldn’t be able to, because I hear everything in one noise. So I don’t really have a social life much, because a social life is talking and listening and I can’t really listen. But it’s fine, I’ve lots to do, I’m OK.” – David Hockney
In Artforum International on line:
NOVEMBER 10, 2014
The International Association of Art Critics, or AICA, has reelected Marek Bartelik as president of the organization for the 2014-17 term and Marjorie Allthorpe-Guyton as the new secretary-general for 2014-18. The elections were held last month at the forty-seventh AICA International Congress in South Korea, during which the 2014 Prize for distinguished contribution to the field of art criticism was posthumously awarded to Lee Yil, along with the 2014 Incentive Prize to young critics for Lee Sun Young. AICA was established as an NGO by UNESCO in 1949 to promote independent art criticism around the world. Bartelik is the fifteenth president of the organization while Allthorpe-Guyton is now its first secretary-general from the UK.
Walking into the abyss…
A postscript to what I wrote about “stealing” on November 2. Here is about Duchamp’s “Fountain”
“Why, then, has the art world persisted in believing an account grounded in the myths he promulgated?
The reason is simple: too much has been invested in Duchamp’s fiction. Countless artistic, curatorial and academic theories have been based upon it. And national pride is at stake, for conceptual art was America’s contribution to Modernism, supposedly dating from 1917, not the 1960s when Duchamp’s work began to weave its spell.
Added to that is the money. Millions of pounds have been invested not just in the 17 or so copies Duchamp authorised of Elsa’s urinal, but in the oceans of conceptual art legitimised by his anti-aesthetic. And in the wake of these ideas, expensive studio equipment and lengthy craft training have been swept out of education because it’s cheaper to think than make.” From an article about Duchamp stealing the famous urinal from Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven
Re-reading W. Benjamin’s “Moscow Diary” in preparation for my Russian art class at Cooper: “When I got back to my room I did not work on the Proust as I had intended, but rather on a reply to the ugly, insolent obituary that Franz Blei had composed on Rilke.”
Artists have been complaining that other artists steel their ideas for a long time. Lately, I have heard about it from a number of artists I know personally. The problem seems to me more complex than just simple steeling, for more and more artists relay on simple (and unfortunately simplistic) ideas, which–one might argue–are often not that original to begin with. As art requires a “concept,” artistic imagination appears less boundless than ever.
Saying for example that “X stole my idea of embroidering a tapestry with names of African slaves brought to the US” is simply ridiculous, because it neglects the whole issue of how such a work was made and presented and also who says that. It looks to me what increasingly maters to the artist Y is that X has a show in a major museum, where Y would like to have his/her works featured as well. So it is about fame and accessibility to galleries and museums, not about the work itself, or even ideas.
Today artists seem to have fewer and fewer ideas, not because everything has been done, but rather because they focus on producing works that deal with fashionable ideas, which often pretend to be “political,” but are often opportunistic. So the race is who is more clever in presenting those predictable (expected) ideas, spend more money on “production,” and whose work is more visible. Curators rule. Artists must chase the ghosts.
Beginning my day with translating a poem:
De la pintura únicamente invocaciones
y algún presentimiento
lo que no se habla
just summons exclusively some intermediary references
and some feelings
Painted by Artemisia Gentileschi!
Planning New Year’s Eve in Myanmar
Sometimes the best birthdays happen when we least expect them to celebrate:
Back from South Korea and Taiwan:
New Secretary-General: Marjorie Allthorpe-Guyton
Re-elected President of AICA International (2014-2017)
Standing tall in Suwan
“Now I am on the last half-emptied case and it is way past midnight. Other thoughts fill me than the ones I am talking about – not thoughts but images, memories. Memories of the cities in which I found so many things, memories of sumptuous rooms and musty book cellars, memories of rooms where these books had been housed.” – Walter Benjamin, “Unpacking My Library”
I did not notice the dog and misidentified the garden:
When I found this photograph, I immediately though: my state of mind
Poland wins the World Championship in Volleyball!
The last time they won, it was 40 years ago, in Mexico City. But I remember the team that took the fifth place in the olympic Games in Mexico in 1968. I was a teenage boy. When the team cam back from the games, we juniors played with them a “fun match” in Olsztyn (several of the players came from the club I played in, AZS Olsztyn). In our eyes, they were simply GODS
If I ever write about my previous relationships that mattered, I will begin as follows: They had separated, but, then, they stayed in touch. Ultimately, they became friends. But, every time they spoke to each other, all they could do was to “verbalize” their painful separation in a pointless conversation, which meant that all they could do was to reaffirm their loneliness, which they feared a lot.
A propos what I wrote yesterday
‘Occasionally when he talked like this there was an odd sense, absurd as it seems, that he was asking for help, even perhaps advice, but this time was different. Now seventy-eight years old, he appeared to have reached a sort of bottom-line exhaustion. He seemed smaller to me, the lines in his forehead more deeply etched, like a grid. Every gesture seemed difficult, every word a struggle. His blue eyes were shy, gentle, youthful as ever, but incredibly pained and sorrowful. I told him that sometimes I found it amazing that he went on. “Yes,” he replied, “often I think it’s time I put an end to it. That’s all through, the new work. But then again … there are also times when I think, maybe it’s time to begin.” He said there had always been so much more in the work than he’d suspected was there, and then added, in what seemed an almost unconscious afterthought, a phrase I’ve never forgotten, which may have summed up his work as well or better than any other: Ambiguities infirmed as they’re put down … “
“Which is more painful,” I asked him, “writing or not writing?”
“They’re both painful, but the pain is different.”‘
– Lawrence Shainberg, “Exorcising Beckett”
Godard’s “Breathless”… “Between grief and nothing, I will take grief ” (William Faulkner):
Art and life.
This photo says it all… Let’s hope I can return to Cuba next year, on a”different boat,” of course.
September 11 (13 years later)
The United States is returning to the Middle East with superguns and soldiers armed to the teeth. Russia and Ukraine are engaged in a deadly guerrilla conflict in eastern Ukraine. China is systematically taking over the South China Sea, while the Filipino coastal guards are sinking in their rusted boats. This alone is enough to make one realize how little we learned from seeing how quickly back then violence led to more violence, killing victims and oppressors alike.
I just occurred to me that what we call “life experience ” is as much a sum of events that actually have happened as a sum of those that we have avoided to happen. I guess one way to interpret it is to examine the relationship of ego to the outside world.
“Rock-and-roll works because we are all a bunch of flakes”–Dave Hickey
A quote for today:
“I was considered active, energetic, and my kingdom was the bed. I used to advertise my loyalty and I don’t believe there is a single person I loved that I didn’t eventually betray. Of course, my betrayals didn’t stand in the way of my fidelity…”
― Albert Camus, The Fall
Is youth wasted on the young, as OW claimed?–not really.
September 5 (our reality)
Getting ready for the elections (photo by Graciela Iturbide)
The news of Dave Hickey “quitting” art criticism reached me through his FB page a few days ago: “Okay. My hour’s up. Bye bye.”
Back to art. Stupid or smart, or both:
The artist Markus Moestue is making a cycle trip across Norway’s ‘bible belt’ on a hand-crafted dinosaur bicycle. He describes his performance project as “a protest against the dogmatic religious education of children” and says “the idea originated from the theme-parks of creationists that teach children that humans and dinosaurs used to live together.” (Henning Pedersen/Courtesy of Markus Moestue)
Face of an artist: Yannoulis Chalepas
The journey continues, when I admire this island from the terrace of my house on the hill
It’s the same as Ithaka, only smaller
I tell myself: a hat of Laistrygonians, Cyclops and angry Poseidon
Under it, the abyss of my poor thoughts.
Sitting on one of Daniel Buren’s “broken columns” in Paris:
August 16 to be,
It’s so interesting: history proves, academic ideas age really badly, and yet we produce more and more academics.
Celebration of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, and, I don’t know why, I am thinking about the meaning of “selfishness”…
Counting days left in Greece, ouch!
Robin Williams was a funny guy; here is what he said about the English: “horribly literate and bitter.” Ouch!
But toward the end of the day, what really matters are these pine trees in Aegina:
Writing about Laocoon: A man in the house he plays with the serpents he writes…
He said, “When you talk about your place here, I think about this poem”:
by Ezra Pound
The tree has entered my hands,
The sap has ascended my arms,
The tree has grown in my breast-
The branches grow out of me, like arms.
Tree you are,
Moss you are,
You are violets with wind above them.
A child; so high; you are,
And all this is folly to the world.
I have always had weakness for people who recall poems so well
The curvatures of the night–the horizons of my imagination
Harun Farocki, 1944-2014
Photo: via Schwarz Foundation
I met him exactly a year from now, here in Greece
A strange spot in the middle and a red crescent moon, barely visible, above (a few days ago):
Greek artist Alexandros Promaritis
BS posted: “Like Mae West, I avoid temptation except when I can’t resist it.” It was in reference to baklava…
A fun dinner with Achille Bonito Oliva last night. It’s a pity he did not dress like this:
Yesterday night I watched “Zorba the Greek,” while eating small yellow pears, the taste of which reminded me of my childhood.
“This is true happiness: to have no ambition and to work like a horse as if you had every ambition. To live far from men, not to need them and yet to love them. To have the stars above, the land to your left and the sea to your right and to realize of a sudden that in your heart, life has accomplished its final miracle: it has become a fairy tale.” –Nikos Kazantzakis
If I had just one number to write on my bathroom mirror, I wonder whose it would be…
Photo by Humphrey Spender
Lately, I have been getting e-mails from wordpress that such and such person “follows” me on this blog. Of course, I am flattered, I think I should be, although I am not sure I know exactly what to be followed means. What I write and post here are just thoughts that I want to remember, plus some information about my professional activities (some of which I want to remember and some to forget). A memory window for my districted mind–perhaps. The difference between here and my FB page is that I don’t expect anyone to click “Like” or comment. Still, it’s pleasant when it happens.
Memorable: Vivian Maier
I just found out, there are seven kinds of love, borrowed from the Ancient Greeks: “Agape(love of humanity); Storge (family love); Pragma (love which endures); Philautia (self-respect); Philla (shared experience); Ludus (flirting, playful affection); and Eros (romantic and erotic love).” I think those definition are not right.
Sometimes life feels like this:
I just found out from FB: “You’re Klimt’s The Kiss!”
Nabokov “editing” Kafka
He said: “Why don’t you relax and enjoy being here. From your terrace, you have one of the most spectacular views in Greece.
I answered: “If I knew how to relax, I would not be in Greece.”
“The Whitney show makes a strong case for the rigor and, often, the beauty of Koons’s art, justifying the avidity of the collectors for whom his works are coveted trophies. Though inseparable from the penchants of these oligarchic times, his success is no fluke.” I read this, and as much as self-critical I must remain–I must say: this is shameful defending one’s territory at any price, while living in the bubble, satisfied with being blinded to the world at large. Read the equation: the Whiney Museum + Koons + collectors + oligarchic times (as an alleged social consciousness) and the New Yorker.
Watching the World Cup, I have developed a strange sense of loyalty. I don’t want the Germans, the Dutch, the Brazilians to win. I want the Mexicans (now already gone), the Chileans (now gone) and the Greeks to win. I don’t care about the Belgians and the Argentines. It would be great if the Americans would win the next match, but if they don’t, I will not lament. I guess I am for the underdogs, but the one who do not bite.
‘And the fine art?
“We just touched the subject,” Gulbis said. “We have a lot more interesting stuff to discuss, but it’s not for the press.”‘
I have began my day with this thought: “In his Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle asked himself whether mankind has a task. The work of the flute player is to play the flute, and the cobbler’s job is to make shoes, but is there a work of man as such? He then advanced his hypothesis according to which man is perhaps born without any task; but he soon abandoned it. However, this hypothesis takes us to the heart of what it is to be human. The human is the animal that has no job: it has no given biological task, no clearly prescribed function. Only a powerful being has the capacity not to be powerful. Man can do everything but does not have to do anything.” Giorgio Agamben
I could have said something similar: ‘He said: “They don’t have unions looking out for them there. And quite honestly, I’m allergic to situations where I have to act as a go-between between the two systems: Manifesta on the one hand, with its American-positivist perspectives, its missionary-like position bordering on religious — and the Russian side with its strategy of dragging on everything, not filling promises and so on. As a result, with a month to the exhibition’s opening, we’ve reached an impasse: nothing’s happening.”’ June 5 “Qué bonito.” Listening to Susana Baca in Greece makes sense, perhaps because of the synergy here between bare feet and a voice endowed with power unmatched in conversations. (As time passes, conversations with other people become shorter and shorter.) * Greek sun cures the paleness of our skin when each day it travels toward the sea, passing quickly between my busy fingers.
May 18 http://brooklynrail.org/special/ART_CRIT_EUROPE/ March 17 Grand Hotel in Lodz, with Serge Guilbaut, Andrzej Szczerski and Adrian Anagnost
May 14 The special issue of the Brooklyn Rail is out this week. Follow: http://www.brooklynrail.org May 12 AICA Awards 2014 with Robert Duncan and Christopher French: May 8
Teresa Zarnower and the Artistic Left
ms2, 19 Ogrodowa St 16 –17th May 2014, from 10.00 am.
Participants: Adrian Anagnost (USA), Nuit Banai (USA), Marek Bartelik (USA/POL),Stanisław Czekalski (POL), Deborah Frizell (USA), Marcin Giżycki (USA/POL), Serge Guilbaut (CAN), Alyce Mahon (GBR), Tom Sandqvist (SWE), Przemysław Strożek (POL), Andrzej Szczerski (POL), Milada Ślizińska (POL)
The conference will present the research into the inter-war avant-garde in the context of the phenomenon of its authors moving from the periphery to the centre of artistic life. The point of reference of the deliberations will be the life and works of Teresa Żarnower – one of the most important figures of the Polish avant-garde. The conference is also the preview of the exhibition abut the life and works of Teresa Żarnower, curated by Milada Ślizińska and Andrzej Turowski. Standard art history presents the development of modern art as a series of stylistic breaks that fostered innovation. When those “breaks” occurred they were frequently linked to dislocation and displacement from peripheries to centers. Artists involved with those transformations were often called agents of the artistic freedom that—we have been told—Western art centers guaranteed to its fullest capacity. Those artists greatly contributed to the emergence of new art movements, hence the existence of the Dada movement, Der Sturm, L’École de Paris, and the New York School.
Mainstream art historical narratives omits any discussion of the fate of those artists, who after moving to art centers, became marginalized and, as a result, have remained largely invisible as far as their contribution to the development of modern art is concerned. Teresa Żarnower has clearly been such an artist.
Discussion will extend to other female artists, in a similar situation to that of Żarnower but from different generations, such as Gego and Nancy Spero. These artists will be placed in the context of the artistic changes related to the development of constructivism, surrealism, and the historical avant-garde in Poland, France, and/or the United States—the countries in which Żarnower resided during different periods in her life.
Friday, 16 May 2014
10.30 a.m. Welcome. Introductory remarks: Jarosław Suchan, Marek Bartelik 10.50 a.m. Andrzej Szczerski (Jagiellonian University, Cracow), Teresa Żarnower in Bucharest – Genealogies of Modernism in Central and Eastern Europe 11.30 a.m. Alyce Mahon (University of Cambridge), Art Must Say Something: Peggy Guggenheim, Teresa Żarnower, and Women of the Avant-Garde 12.10 a.m. Milada Ślizińska (Akademia Sztuk Pięknych, Warszawa), Teresa Żarnowerów – An Artist in a World that Has Collapsed Before Her Very Eyes 12.50 a.m. Discussion
3 p.m. Stanisław Czekalski (Uniwersytet Adama Mickiewicza, Poznań), Defence of Warsaw – How? On Teresa Żarnower’s Photomontages for Zygmunt Zaremba’s Book 3.40 p.m. Marcin Giżycki (Rhode Island School of Design, Providence), Żarnower and the Themersons – A History of Friendship in a Dramatic Time 4.20 p.m. Przemysław Strożek (Institute of Art, Polish Academy of Sciences), Apology for Chaplin. About the Fighting Proletariat Hero on the Polish Artistic and Literary Left (1924-1929) 5 p.m. Discussion
Saturday, 17 May 2014
10.30 a.m. Serge Guilbaut (University of British Columbia, Vancouver), Inform(ation) about Post-War styles: A view inside the Labyrinth of drips, stains and Squares 11.10 a.m. Marek Bartelik (The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, New York), Constructivism in the United States: Commercialization, Politicization, Individualization 11.50 a.m. Tom Sandqvist (University of Arts, Crafts and Design, Stockholm, and University of Lapland, Rovaniemi), Marginalization, Exile, Periphery—A Quest for New Approaches 12.30 a.m. Discussion
3 p.m. Adrian Anagnost (University of Chicago), Migration and Collectivity: Teresa Żarnower. Lasar Segall. Lepoldo Haar. 3.40 p.m. Nuit Banai (Tafts University, Boston), Gego: Towards a Modernism of Exile 4.20 p.m. Deborah Frizzell (William Paterson University, Wayne), Nancy Spero: Power, Gender, and the Body 5 p.m. Discussion
Bilingual Polish-English symposium (simultaneous translation).
Curator of the conference: Marek Bartelik Curatorial cooperation: Paweł Polit Coordinator: Przemysław Purtak
The conference announces the exhibition: Teresa Żarnower (1897-1949). A Woman Artist of the End of Utopia Curators of the exhibition: Milada Ślizińska, Andrzej Turowski Coordinator: Sonia Owczarek-Nieśpiałowska
May 1 May Day 2014 April 30 I guess it is unavoidable: I care less and less about what is current in art and “life.” April 28 Looking at the audience… (Cervantes Institute, AICA panel on the state of art criticism in Europe): April 24 Back from Harvard April 23 Oswaldo Vigas died yesterday. Pour ma famille et mes amis, Oswaldo n’est plus ici, il est parti dans l’autre monde, celui qui devra être à la dimension du sien, beau et généreux comme vous l’avez tous connu. Ne l’oublions jamais. Janine et Lorenzo April 23 An intriguing collaboration between and artist and a painter: And Michelangelo’s grocery list April 22
On June 12, 1961, a cool early summer day in Paris, a 28-year-old Susan Sontag jotted down in her diary a list of books she intended to buy:
Michel Leiris, L’Age d’Homme George Bataille, L’érotisme Robert Michels, Sexual Ethics Torrance, Calvin’s Doctrine of Man Harnack, The Expansion of Christianity Brooks Adams, The Theory of Social Revolutions Jean Wahl, Défense et élargissement de la philosophie Le recours aux poètes : Claudel Husserl L’ouvrage posthume de Husserl : La Krisis R. Caillois, Art poétique
April 18 Good Friday with Agnieszka in New York April 16 “This is a tendency of the contemporary world, to introduce a false variety within a vast sameness.” – Alain Badiou April 14 Reading and laughing: “But it was a pair of men who would never make it onto her list–the critic Clement Greenberg, who claimed to be the only heterosexual man in the circle excluded from her pages; and Jackson Pollock, who reputedly said that you’d have to put a towel over Peggy’s head to fuck her–who changed the meaning of her life.” April 13 Spring is coming to NYC April 12 “Youth comes with age” April 11 April 10 It’s mind-boggling how much time is being devoted to discussing bad art, and how little attention is being paid to finding good one. Is this one of the signs how lazy critics have become, looking for catchy subjects to write about? April 9 “In philosophy the snake swallows its tail….” – young Susan Sontag April 8 I did a quiz and found out that in the Medieval times I would had been a witch doctor: “When you were young (back in the year 1457) you enjoyed rebel acts and some mysteries until you’ve found the dark and bewitching art of witchcraft. Now, you use your special set of skills to help and heal other people around you. It’s pretty accurate. April 7 I like people who are not scared of other people. It took me long time. April 6 Working with archival photographs, thinking about Benjamin. April 4 Some days, I get up and find a work of art that touches me: Arwa Abouon’s “Learning by Heart,” 2012 April 2
|WALKING IN THE AIR: CONTEMPORARY ART CRITICISM IN EUROPE Panel DiscussionSunday, April 27, 2014 3-6pm Panel Discussion; 6-7:30pm ReceptionCervantes Institute 211 East 49th Street, New York, NY Admission: Free with RSVP through http://walkingintheair.eventbrite.com|
What is the situation of art criticism in Europe? How should we talk about art criticism in a local geo-cultural context while art is becoming a global phenomenon? What role does social media play in making local art criticism globally accessible? What is the role of the art critic in shaping identity of local art? These are only a few questions, which noted scholars and critics from Spain, Finland, Poland and the Czech Republic will address during the panel discussion Walking in the Air: Art Criticism in Europe. Moderated by Hyperallergic‘s co-founder and editor Hrag Vartanian, the discussion will begin with opening remarks by Marek Bartelik PhD, president of AICA International, followed by a presentation by each panelist about the current state of art criticism in their representative country with the emphasis on criticism in daily newspapers. Participants Dorota Jarecka (Poland) Marja-Terttu Kivirinta (Finland) Javier Montes (Spain) Tomás Pospiszyl (Czech Republic)Moderator Hrag Vartanian (Hyperallergic)3-6pm Panel Discussion 6-7:30pm Reception in the gardenFree admission with mandatory RSVP at http://walkingintheair.eventbrite.comThis panel, Walking in the Air: Art Criticism in Europe, will be accompanied by a special edition of the Brooklyn Rail (May issue), devoted to art criticism in Europe and the United States.Organized by AICA International and EUNIC New York as well as Finnish Cultural Institute in New York, Spain Culture New York, The Czech Center New York, and The Polish Cultural Institute New York; in collaboration with AICA-USA and The Cervantes Institute in New York. Media partners: Brooklyn Rail, Hyperallergic.
March 28 With time, our lives become full of voids. March 19 I saw these books dumped on a sidewalk in Paris: I took one with me. March 17 I have been suspicious of the Ai Wei Wei phenomenon, his fame that is impossible to measure against his body of work–until I heard him being interviewed on the BBC radio this morning. He is one of the most articulate artists I have ever heard speaking. A true thinker, in the best sense of this word. March 16 Stupidity is always “right” March 15 Last night’s AICA France Prix winner: Marc Lenot discussing the work of Estefania Penafiel special mention: Mathilde Roman discussing the work of Emilie Pitoiset March 12 Walking back home in Paris March 9 A gorgeous day in Paris. “Le Bateau “pas trop” ivre” March 3 Flying to Paris over Iceland: February 28-March 1 J.R’s “Tears in Their Eyes”:
February 27 This is remarkable:
February 26 Odd couples 1: February 23 Sometimes days pass so quickly, and all I could wish for it now is to had been able to write in those tiny scripts of Walter Benjamin. No luck today. February 18 Thinking about going back to my house in Greece this summer. Photo: Vangelis Rinas. February 17: From the exhibition “Pawel Althamer: The Neighbors” (February 12-April 13, 2013) at the New Museum “But when I left the show and stood on the sidewalk, I took a quick look around. A little to the right, I saw a long line of men standing in the cold night outside the Bowery Mission, waiting for a meal. To the left, I saw a crowd of stylish people, mostly young, chatting and waiting for tickets in the New Museum’s bright lobby. These images had no connection. These neighbor institutions, like life and art, are still a million miles apart.” -Holland Cotter, The New York Times
February 16 A 30 minutes program on TV in Taiwan (recorded in December 2013) : http://www.ocacmactv.net/mactv/video.htm?sid=93876 February 14 “Love is an event that arrives from the outside and breaks time in two.” –Michael Hardt, “The Procedures of Love” February 13 Some foods are memorable, because we want to forgot their taste as soon as possible. Last Tuesday at the Russian Samovar: February 11 Pawel Althamer, critically: February 8
The first page of a letter from prison written by Hashem Shabbani, executed in Iran a few days ago:
February 7 President Obama politicizes the Olympics, the world is watching… as the Russians mention Kazimir Malevich among their “national treasures” during the opening ceremony. February 6 My father and I, as young men: February 3 End of the year never ends on 31 December for me. This year, it has already been “postponed” until today. February 2 My Danish dream this evening: January 28 Thinking with images… January 25, “Bryla chleba”–a “lump of bread” in English. Is it the opposite of a “slice of bread”? January 24 A long discussion with W. about Fridha Kahlo’s bed a few days ago. Just big enough for one person (see photo posted earlier). Here is a pendant to that photo: W.’s version of the picture: January 23 A free T-shirt from the Humane Society of the United States arrived with a sticker: “Have a heart, be smart and make sure your pet is spayed or neutered.” Reading this, I am happy I don’t have a pet. Today Frida Kahlo’s bedroom? January 19 Last night I had hard time to fall asleep, fearing too much work after I would wake up. I woke up and after working all day long came across this sentence: “The more effectively a man is able to speak, the more successfully he is misunderstood.”–W. Benjamin. January 17, Always learning about New York, just slower and slower: About the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art “…invaluable museum.” Holland Cotter, New York Times, June 2013 The Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art is the first and only dedicated gay and lesbian art museum in the world with a mission to exhibit and preserve gay and lesbian art, and foster the artists who create it. The Museum has a permanent collection of over 22,000 objects, 6-8 major exhibitions annually, artist talks, film screenings, readings, THE ARCHIVE – a quarterly art newsletter, a membership program, and a research library. The Leslie-Lohman Museum is operated by the Leslie/Lohman Gay Art Foundation, a non-profit founded in 1987 by Charles W. Leslie and Fritz Lohman who have supported gay and lesbian artists for over 30 years. The Museum is located at 26 Wooster Street, in the SoHo neighborhood of New York City. January 16 “In private, Jean-Michel was incredibly sweet and an old-fashioned romantic,” says Powell, whose series of Basquiat nudes, on view at the Suzanne Geiss Company in New York through February 22, provides a glimpse of the rebel artist in repose. “In these intimate photographs, he was just being himself,” she says. January 15 “The Christmas Feast is already a fading memory, And already the mind begins to be vaguely aware Of an unpleasant whiff of apprehension at the thought Of Lent and Good Friday which cannot, after all, now Be very far off. But, for the time being, here we all are, Back in the moderate Aristotelian city Of darning and the Eight-Fifteen, where Euclid’s geometry And Newton’s mechanics would account for our experience, And the kitchen table exists because I scrub it.” – W. H. Auden January 14 January has been tough: “Every line we succeed in publishing today…is a victory wrested from the powers of darkness.” Walter Benjamin, January 1940. I am being followed: January 6 Marina Abramovic success as a performance artist might be unprecedented. The question it rises for me: Is it because of the quality, or shrewdness of her art? Or because of the lowering of artistic standards in the art world? January 5 Judith Malina speaks—the chairs taken away, no seats left—I listen: -“… I added to that an assemble of 25 anarchists, who represent the best part of the world who confront that criminal element.” -“He is a conservative rabbi, which tries to take the modernism of the reform and the tradition of the Orthodox and make them work together.” -“I still don’t have any faith in the leadership of this country, or of any country.” -“When Piscator did his auditions…—I said ‘I am a pacifist.’ He said: ‘So am I, but how are you going to be a pacifist’…?” January 4
I think I have been flattered by the fact there are people who want to read on a regular basis what I write here (if this is indeed the case), although I don’t know what it means exactly. In some way, it puts more pressure on me to write something, which is exactly what I am doing now. Luca Signorelli (c. 1445 – 16 October 1523), drawing of a Man Carrying a Corpse January 1, 2014 Beginning a new year: This is Courbet at the age of fifty: A “naked man,” living alone. While painting The Stormy Sea (also called The Wave), Courbet is staying in a cottage at Etretat, on the Norman coast. In just a year he will be imprisoned for political reasons, which will change him forever. But for now he is painting another landscape, only a window behind his back. The painting depicts an agitated sea. A couple of fishing boats have been abandoned on a beach under a low, stormy sky; another boat is stranded in the water. The Stormy Sea has been interpreted as representation of the savage power of nature, a suggestion of the power of historic changes at that time. But is that all it is? Guy de Maupassant recalled his visit to Courbet’s place: “In a huge, empty room, a fat, dirty, greasy man was slapping white paint on a blank canvas with a kitchen knife. From time to time he would press his face against the window and look out at the storm. The sea came so close that it seemed to batter the house and completely envelop it in its foam and roar. The salty water beat against the windowpanes like hail, and ran down the walls. On his mantelpiece was a bottle of cider next to a half-filled glass. Now and then, Courbet would take a few swigs, and then return to his work.” That dramatic image of a “fat, dirty, greasy man” in his summer cottage has long stuck with me. What did he see, that brutish man—the same man who claimed he did not want to paint an angel because he had never seen one—what did he see when he pressed his face against the window to watch the storm? December 24 “Language is a process of free creation; its laws and principles are fixed, but the manner in which the principles of generation are used is free and infinitely varied. Even the interpretation and use of words involves a process of free creation.” – Noam Chomsky The occasional beauty f not understanding:
December 23 “Christmas Eve afternoon we scrape together a nickel and go to the butcher’s to buy Queenie’s traditional gift, a good gnawable beef bone. The bone, wrapped in funny paper, is placed high in the tree near the silver star. Queenie knows it’s there. She squats at the foot of the tree staring up in a trance of greed: when bedtime arrives she refuses to budge. Her excitement is equaled by my own. I kick the covers and turn my pillow as though it were a scorching summer’s night. Somewhere a rooster crows: falsely, for the sun is still on the other side of the world.” -“A Christmas Memory,” by Truman Capote December 21 “The great writer is the very symbol of life, of the non-perfect. He moves effortlessly, giving the illusion of perfection, from some unknown center which is certainly not the brain center but which is definitely a center, a center connected with the rhythm of the whole universe and consequently as sound, solid, unshakable, as durable, defiant, anarchic, purposeless, as the universe itself. Art teaches nothing, except the significance of life.” – Henry Miller December 20 Season greeting are coming. Photo: Ryszard Gorniak December 19 Sometimes not having a happy ending is the only ending that makes sense December 15 Holidays season is here December 14 In the studio of the Sri Lankan artist Pushpakumara Koralegadara December 13 10 years have already passed since the death of Matti Megged. I am thinking about the fate of “minor” writers with major intellects. P.s.: Acknowledging a death of an important person in our life might produce a desire to separate from those people who were important for the person now gone and who are still alive. December 9
December 7 http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/feat/archives/2013/12/08/2003578533/1 (see section: Art Criticism) on this blog And the print version Asia today December 5 ＡＩＣＡ主席讚台南藝術內涵迷人
記者鄭佳佳／台南報導 國際藝評人協會ＡＩＣＡ主席 Bartelik昨日造訪台南，除參觀奇美博物館、更拜會了市長賴清德與在地藝術家。 Bartelik將台南比喻為義大利古城翡冷翠，無強大的政經影響力，但藝術內涵卻格外迷人，潛力無窮，希望未來能將台南之美引介各國。 國際藝評人協會ＡＩＣＡ成立於一九五○年，是聯合國教科文組織下的非政府組織，目標在於宣揚各類形式的藝術評論。ＡＩＣＡ的總部位於巴黎，擁有來自全球六十多個不同地區逾五千名會員。 該會主席 Bartelik昨日到了台南市，首站就是到市府拜會。「文化成就偉大的國家。」市長賴清德表示，台南是台灣第一座城市，也是三百年的文化首都。轄內擁有許多博物館、藝文空間與歷史古蹟，也是全國唯一設立三座國家級風景區的城市。 Bartelik非常認同賴清德說法，他更把台南比喻為義大利古城翡冷翠，雖無強大的政治、經濟影響力，但藝術內涵豐富，潛力無限。 Bartelik一行人而後在文化局安排下，陸續到了藝術家工作坊與翁同隆相見歡，並造訪 B.B ART GALLERY、東門美術館、奇美博物館等處，了解在地文化特色。
國際藝評人協會理事長拜會史次長 史亞平次長本（12）月3日上午接見「國際藝評人協會」理事長巴鐵立博士（Dr. Marek Bartelik），肯定國際藝評人協會多年來推廣國際藝術評論的成就，並期許台灣藝評人協會與國際藝評人協會加強交流與合作，介紹我國多元充滿活力的社會並透過國際藝評網絡宣導我保存及推廣中華文化現況。 巴鐵立理事長感謝史次長百忙中接見，並表示，該協會旨在確保國際藝術創作之自由及其論述品質，促進國際藝文界交流與互相尊重，並積極捍衛思想與言論表達之自由。成員包括各國藝術評論家、大學藝術系所教授、學者、策展人及博物館與美術館之藝術行政工作者，現有61個國家會員(National Sections)及來自95國共約4,600名個人會員。每年於全球各地舉辦藝術評論研討會、展覽及出版活動，例如每年9月份舉辦之「國際藝評人協會世界年會」為國際藝文界資源交流之重要平台。中華民國藝評人協會於2001年加入該協會，並曾於2004年在台舉辦AICA世界年會，為國際藝評界積極成員。 史次長首先歡迎巴鐵立理事長首度訪華，感佩其多年來領導國際藝評界的貢獻及積極與中華民國藝評人協會合作的績效，續介紹我國近年來文化藝術發展現況，史次長引述馬總統期許中華民國成為中華文化的領航者及我國對中華文化之保存以及發揚之情形並說明，台灣數十年來歷經各項政經改革，成熟的公民社會與民間組織蓬勃發展，加上自由之社會風氣能包容不同文化與意見，尤其尊重言論表達的自由。史次長另介紹近年來兩岸交流密切略以，每天有96班次直航班機往返直航，去年超過250萬大陸人士來台參訪，5年來已簽署19項包括文化、經貿等各層面之協議，以確保兩岸交流互惠互利。台灣最為陸客稱道者即為開放的社會與友善的人民。 會後合照 巴鐵立理事長提到訪台數日來目睹台灣各項進步現況，將支持台灣藝評人協會爭取在台辦理國際會議。史次長對此表示歡迎，並強調政府必將積極提供包括給予與會各國代表簽證便利等協助。另史次長亦向巴鐵立理事長表示歡迎未來「國際藝評人協會」再度來台舉辦世界年會。陪同巴鐵立理事長拜會史次長者包括台灣藝評人協會理事長鄭水萍博士及該會常務理事台北教育大學教授林志明博士等。
November 14, When the mainstream media asks critics to speak it is almost exclusively about the record prices at the auctions. Still, a great publicity for AICA: November 11 November 10 R. said” “Gray is the color of democracy, but it’s still a nice color. I thought about the wall that I see from the window of my hotel room in Paris. October 30 Between Art and Life: Lucy Lippard’s lecture at the New School. Brilliant without being pretentious. Perhaps “brilliant” is not the right word: relaxed? October 16 In Caracas: October 15 Knowledge travels: “Reading Marek Bartelik’s earlier essay on Archipenko in the Henry Moore Institute Essays on Sculpture series, I came across the astounding comment that, ‘It might be that in the German capital Archipenko was finally able to recognise his émigré status as a strength rather than a weakness, and that this would soon take him to the United States – the quintessential country of émigrés.’ The issue that I found so engaging here is how Berlin might have offered a different émigré experience to Paris. Surely the melting pot of Montparnasse must have been far more ‘dematerialising’, to borrow Bartelik’s expression? The main contrast between Paris and Berlin was that Archipenko moved from a city where he was surrounded by Germans, Italians, Romanians, Dutch, Poles, Britons, Russians and individuals of many other nationalities, to one with such a profound concentration of Russians that perhaps it reversed the ‘dematerialising’ effects of emigration, as comically reported by Richard Sheldon in his introduction to Victor Shklovsky’s 1923 Berlin novel Zoo, or Letters Not about Love: ‘A popular anecdote of the time told about the German who, hearing nothing but Russian spoken on the Kurfürstendamm, suffered an attack of homesickness, returned to his apartment, and forthwith hanged himself.’” from a symposium paper at the Henry Moore Foundation in 2006. September 24 September 10 Orlan exhibit’s at the Musée d’Orsay: September 5
THE POLISH SECTION
OF THE INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF ART CRITICS (AICA)
kindly invites you for a discussion taking part within the framework of the AICA post-congress in Krakow accompanying the XLVI International AICA congress “White Places – Black Holes” in Košice (Slovakia).
The International Cultural Centre in Krakow is responsible for the co-organisation of the discussion.
“The Return of Art Criticism”
Monday 30 September 2013, 6.00 pm
The International Cultural Centre, Sala pod Kruki, Rynek Główny 25
Participants: Marek Bartelik (The President of AICA International) Anda Rottenberg (AICA Poland) Henry Meyric-Hughes (Honorary President of AICA International) Adriana Almada ( AICA Paraguay) Juraj Čarný ( AICA Slovakia) Richard Gregor (AICA Slovakia) and James Elkins (The School of the Art Institute of Chicago) Convenor: Andrzej Szczerski (The President of AICA Poland) Contemporary art criticism is at present undergoing dynamic changes. We can notice its rapid development taking place due to the possibility of publishing texts not only in printed editions, but most of all in the Internet. However, the rising number of publications does not come with the advancement of their quality. At present, art criticism is often incompetent, it avoids making value judgements, and is beings used for promotional purposes. As a result, critical practice – also the one which is still valuable – is being marginalised and it does not practically influence artistic life. During the discussion we shall consider the presence/absence of the art critic in artistic life springing from this situation, the place of art criticism among other institutions dealing with art, as well as the difference between the art critic and the curator of contemporary art. We shall also pose a question on the meaning of art critical texts in contrast to other forms of art criticism available to contemporary critics. Yet another problem to consider is the existence of “global art criticism”, which sets the standards accepted globally, and its opposite, that is local criticism, which draws inspiration from the local artistic tradition. Finally, we shall consider the necessity of “the return of art criticism” that works not just a superficial commentary, but as a field for valuable and open discussion. This way, it may become an alternative to the present position of the art world and curatorial practice that more and more often play the role of entertainment and representation answering to the exigencies of the current cultural policy. August 21 With Hania August 7 One knows that the place one stays is very special, when we realize that time comes not to say “good-bye” immediately, but that it will come soon, in a few days or so. It is a moment of great summer sadness. July 19 My head obviously wonders around. There is something inconsistent in thinking: I must complain about the media, and but I want to be a subject of their attention. It’s funny I think about it as I sit in a cafe with a spectacular view on the sea. July 18 Back in Greece. Every time I travel, I discover. Zooming on the Greeks: One never knows what is true and not true at a given moment here. I guess it boils down to the philosophical “on the other hand,” but it can be highly enjoying, especially when people lie or cheat, and they do. Still, I am so glad to be here. I must say, it all boils down to this, and it should be this way: June 27 Greek wine June 24 Yes, the moon is majestic here in Corfu. But it is a little bit of tricky to adjust to being alone, being down to earth up in the attic, but I will manage. Thanks for the practical advices–they are necessary. The coffee machine finally gave up–and it’s working. I would like to see the tennis guy tomorrow, perhaps around 7pm. Could you arrange it? I will go to the hotel and look for him. P.s.: Yes, the sparrows are still flying fast, close to the ground. June 3 Evidence of the earliest winemaking in France has been described – and indicates an Italian origin. May 19 Betty died today: Since time began the dead alone know peace. Life is but melting snow. —Nandai (1786-1817) May 11 Ideas and ideals are priceless–try to explain to those who ruin schools for profit, fame, and false security. This says it all: Here is the article: http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/04/29/the-tragedy-of-cooper-union/ Changes have always been made by young people who did not listened to old fools, who pretend to be wise men. By the way, the superficiality of the art world might reveal itself when thousands rush to sign petition to protects Pussy Riots and only hundreds to save Cooper Union. May 10 Rembrandt to Saskia” “Those who seek power often end up as collaborators” April 16
Moscow Innovation Prizes Awarded
The eighth Innovation Prize award ceremony took place Tuesday night in the Moscow Manege, a Neo-Classical former indoor riding academy adjacent to Red Square, which since 1831 has served as an exhibition space. The annual prize, funded by the state and administered by Moscow’s National Center for Contemporary Arts (NCCA), includes awards totaling about $100,000, given to either Russian nationals or curators of Russian-themed exhibitions and spread across seven categories (including two out-of-competition awards), such as for works of art, curatorial projects and art theory and criticism. In addition, the Innovation Prize jury selected winners of four partner prizes, including a prize donated by Moscow collector Stella Kesaeva, who is for the second time commissioner of the Russian pavilion at the Venice Biennale. “Winning the Innovation Prize is like winning Eurovision or the American Music Awards,” Russian artist Evgenia Balantseva, one of the nominees for the “new generation” award, told A.i.A. over lunch, aptly anticipating the spectacular atmosphere at the ceremony a few hours later, where there were television cameras, a big screen, live pipe organ music and a 30-strong children’s choir. “The prize is one of the most important ones in Russia. It not only focuses on artists but also on curatorial practice,” executive director of the Moscow Museum of Modern Art and three-time jury member Vasili Tsereteli told A.i.A. The five exhibitions shortlisted in the curatorial project category raised some eyebrows, since two out of the seven jury members were nominated as best curator. While the loudest applause went to Vitaly Patsukov’s exhibition “John Cage: Silent Presence,” which took place at Moscow’s National Center for Contemporary Arts, it was Iara Boubnova, director of the Institute of Contemporary Art Sofia, Bulgaria, who won the prize for her work in the second Ural Industrial Biennial of Contemporary Art, which took place in Ekaterinburg last fall. Boubnova, who is currently co-curating Jan Hoet’s first Online Biennial, was a member of the Innovation Prize jury. Before going on stage to collect the prize, she told A.i.A., “I asked the director of the NCCA to retract my nomination, but it was too late. I am not a white angel, but it’s not foul play,” she insisted. Curator Andrey Erofeyev (also a nominee and a jury member) told A.i.A., “Iara and I both left the room when the categories in which our projects were nominated were being discussed and voted on.” Later in the evening she additionally received a partner prize offered by ViennaFair, by a vote of the same jury. Erofeyev, whose dismissal from the Tretyakov State Gallery in 2009 for his exhibition “Forbidden Art” caused a stir internationally, had been nominated for “Angle of Vision,” a solo exhibition of Leonid Sokov at Moscow’s MoMA last spring. While he lost out to Boubnova in the main prize, he received a partner prize donated by U-ART: You and Art, a foundation created by private collector couple Tamaz and Iveta Manasherov. “There is not enough healthy competition in the Russian art scene,” Elena Strygina, director of nonprofit space Red October Gallery, told A.i.A. at the ceremony. “That’s always the problem-the art world in Russia is so small,” Valerij Ledenev, editor of Artchronika magazine, told A.i.A. by e-mail. Pre-selection committee member and curator Simon Rees of Vienna’s Museum of Applied Arts (MAK) defended the process, however, telling A.i.A. that this year’s edition of the Innovation Prize was “a fair reflection of the Russian contemporary art scene.”
April 14 Conversation with Danae and Yannis: An idealist might be a person who asks right questions, to which he or she then gives wrong answers. April 11 “Art collective Provmyza has won this year’s Innovation award, Russia’s equivalent of the Turner Prize, for their contemporary opera about a fatal car crash. Marevo was first performed in July 2012 at Artspace Arsenal in Nizhny Novgorod, a city on the Volga east of Moscow, before taking to the stage for a second time in the capital last month. It was the first opera from Provmyza, whose two members, Galina Myznikova and Sergey Provorov, had previously only ever worked with video art and film, a genre that has ensured them a regular slot at festivals around the world.
April 6 On my way to Moscow: Moscow’s National Center for Contemporary Art has just announced its nominees for the 2012 edition of its Art Innovation Prize, which awards the best artworks, exhibitions, criticism, and emerging artists from the past year. Find the full list of nominees below. Nominated for the “Work of Visual Art” category: 1. Andrey Kuzkin. “All ahead!” 2. Alexander Brodsky. “CISTERNA” 3. MishMash Group. “Geopsichoisometrical examination of the city Ekaterinburg” 4. Where the Dogs Run Group. “Knitting and crocheting of the Mandelbrot set” 5. Vitas Stasyunas. “Order” Nominated for the “Curator’s Project” category: 1. Victor Miziano. ”Impossible Community” 2. Olseya Turkina. “Necrorealism” 3. Andrey Smirnov. “Generation Z. Russian Music Technology Pioneers 1910-1930” 4. Ekaterina Degot, David Riff, Joanna Mytkowska. ”Auditorium Moscow” 5. Marina Zvyagintseva, Jury Samodurov. “Open lesson” within the NCCA program “Modern art in an open community” Nominated for the “Art Theory and Criticism” category: 1. Nelly Podgorskaya, Olesya Turkina. Illustrated scientific art publication “Necrorealism” 2. Olga Shishko. “Expanded Cinema” catalogue 3. Andrey Fomenko. “Soviet Photo Avant-garde and industrial-utilitarian art concept” 4. Evgenija Kikodze, Nelly Podgorskaya. “Yury Zlotnikov’s Universe” 5. Oleg Frolov. “Populist” magazine Nominated for the “Regional Project” category: 1. Nelya Korzhova, Roman Korzhov. VII Shiryaevo International Biennale of Contemporary Art «Foreigners: between Europe and Asia” 2. Evgeny Strelkov, Andrey Suzdalev. “Illusion. From Fair Attraction towards Media Installation” 3. Kseniya Fedorova. “Art focus towards technologies: charm and challenge” 4. Nikolay Alexeev, Ilya Dolgov. “Ruins of Utopia” 5. Evgeny Umansky, Irina Chesnokova, Eva Gorzhadek, StahShablovsky. “International Art Project “ENCLAVE” Nominated for the “New Generation” category: 1. Alexey Buldakov, Anastasiya Ryabova. “AttentionWhores” 2. Taus Makhacheva. “The Fast and The Furious” 3. Valery Chtak. “Only the truth” 4. Alexander Gronsky. “Pastoral” 5. Roman Mokrov. “Endless Story”
Members of the Jury
|[Marek Bartelik]Art historian, critic, President of AICA International (New York, USA)||[Iara Bubnova]Curator, critic, Founding Director at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Sofia (Sofia, Bulgaria)|
|[Blandine Chavanne]Director and Chief Curator at the Museum of Fine Arts in Nantes (Nantes, France)||[Andrey Erofeyev]Art historian, curator (Moscow, Russia)|
|[Marina Loshak]Curator, Artistic Director at Manege Association of Museums and Exhibition Halls (Moscow, Russia)||[Dimitri Ozerkov]Curator, Head of Contemporary Art Department at the State Hermitage Museum (St. Petersburg, Russia)|
|[Anna Tereshkova]Director at Siberia Centre for Contemporary Art (Novosibirsk, Russia)|
April 1 March 26 Picture says it all: March 9 ART CRITICISM IN THE FUTURE MEDIA LANDSCAPE STOCKHOLM 22 MARCH 2013 AT 3-5 PM In the Cinema, Floor 2 Admission free. Admission free to the permanent collection is free from 6 pm Language: English Welcome address by Ann-Sofi Noring, Co-Director of Moderna Museet. Opening address by Christian Chambert, President of AICA Sweden Short talk by Marek Bartelik on the situation in the USA, also highlighting the international perspective. This will be followed by a round table discussion. Moderator: Mårten Arndtzén, art critic at Swedish Radio. On the panel: Marek Bartelik, New York, President of AICA, critic for Artforum. Daniel Birnbaum, Director of Moderna Museet. Jonas Ekeberg, Oslo, editor of the web publication Kunstkritikk. Dorota Jarecka, Warsaw, art critic for Gazeta Wyborcza. Birgitta Rubin, Stockholm, art critic and art editor for Dagens Nyheter. Great changes are underway in the mass media. In the wake of the digital revolution, newspapers are facing serious challenges, according to the optimists, or their imminent death, according to others. How does this affect public debate and art criticism – and art itself? Earning a living by writing about art is hardly likely to get easier when newspapers are forced to cut all their expenses, for lack of comparable digital business models. And if the space for professional art criticism shrinks in the daily press, how will this impact on radio and TV coverage? Meanwhile, the internet offers virtually limitless potential for communication and interaction. How can art criticism avail itself of this, and how will criticism be influenced by the new parameters? These are a few of the questions we will deal with in the afternoon discussion. The panel represents experiences from the situation in Scandinavia, Poland and the USA, from the daily press, the internet, radio, TV and leading art magazines. Dorota Jarecka, Marek Bartelik, Daniel Birnbaum, Jonas Ekeberg, Birgitta Rubin och Mårten Arndtzén. March 5 Without words: February 24
Un libro homenajeará la trayectoria de Oswaldo Vigas
En el proyecto participan los investigadores Marek Bartelik, Álvaro Medinade, Frederico Morais y Bélgica Rodríguez
CARMEN VICTORIA MÉNDEZ 23 de febrero 2013 – 12:01 am
February 21 There will be is always something more hyperreal than before: January 28 January 27 »It’s not easy to write an easy-to-read novel« Marek Bartelik talks to Marc Degens* Marek Bartelik: How do you perceive the relationship between the medium of writing and other mediums, such as painting or music? And how do you deal with question in your writings, particularly in your book we will be discussing? Marc Degens: Good books, novels or poems have their own sound. It’s a matter of music. They have an a musical property. Descriptions in literature can be painted like an oil painting, concrete or abstract art. Many techniques and means of expression are universal. You can transform a phrase from one medium into another medium, if you like to. For example a painting by Martin Kippenberger has more in common with a song by the Ramones than with a painting by Salvador Dalí, Balthus or Lucian Freud. Or the poems by Allen Ginsberg, the music by Bob Dylan and the comic strips by Robert Crumb – they all have a lot in common, in form and content. A central theme of my novel “God’s Busted Knee” is yet another similarity. At the beginning of their career many artists – writers, painters, composers – are outsiders. They work alone. Their success or their failures changes them and their works. That’s what my book is about. Briefly explain your creative process. How much does a piece of art or music that inspires you determine the formal aspects and the narrative in your story? I learn new techniques from other media. You can’t transfer every technique from one medium to another – but a lot. In my novel I connect the chapters in a way I know from many comic magazines. The “to be continued”-panel at the end of a story. It’s not a cliffhanger, it’s more like a forecast. A phrase like “Now our Hero is safe, but next week …” This is not an invention by comic book creators, I know, but I discovered this technique by reading comic books. Also you can use other artists as a role model und learn from their attitude. For instance I learned from John Lennon, that you can compose “She loves you” – and three years later “Strawberry fields forever”. Two great songs, but radically different. Such things helps me as a writer to say, okay, now I’ve written this book in this style, but the next book will be something completely different. What role does your native language/the structure of your native language play in your books? Perhaps the question “What role does your native language play in your books?” is a little bit vague. What I mean is how the language (French, German Spanish, Polish) defines the narrative. For instance, is it just one “French,” or perhaps different characters speak in different “argo,” use expressions coming from different languages…. Each language has a proper linguistic structure and rhythm: Does the writer respect them, or tries to bring his/her own. Mark Twain didn’t like the German language. In German you can build very long sentences. The first part of the verb is on one page, the second part on the other page. The German language and literature can be very complicated, like in the works of Thomas Mann. You can see his effort while reading his novels. Many people like this, but I don’t. I want to hide the struggle. “God’s busted knee” should be easy to read, the readers should concentrate on the story and not on the style. Like in the works of my favorite American writers: Richard Yates, Philip Roth or Raymond Carver. And I assure you, it’s not easy to write an easy-to-read novel. Select a work of art or a short piece of music to be presented in conjunction with our conversation. »Lost in the Andes« by Carl Barks. Why have you chosen Carl Barks? I love his work. His work is entertaining, funny and also serious. He is a great storyteller and combines the everyday life with the great myths of the human race. Also he is a great illustrator, I think his comic book art is nearly perfect. Finally I learned a lot of his work: Donald Duck has a lot of problems, but his life is marvelous. He finds the golden Helmet, he is mastering the Matterhorn and Lost in the Andes (An-dies). I learned from Donald Duck that you can find adventures anytime and everywhere. What question would you like to be asked? Are there other artists from the Ruhr Valley who inspired you or your art? My answer is yes. The painter Martin Kippenberger, the film and theater director Christoph Schlingensief and the musician Helge Schneider. They all were born in the Ruhr Valley – like I was. When I had a close look at their work, I find out that it is funny, serious and entertaining at the same time. And it’s full of self-mockery. I think this is because of the Ruhr Valley. It’s a region in the hand of clerks. You can’t impress your parents or friends if you say – Hi Mom, hi Dad, I am going to write a novel or become a sculptor – but they will be impressed if you say, hey, from now on I will play underwater rugby. For an artist in the Ruhr Valley it’s easier to live in Berlin instead of Bochum. In Berlin you can meet a lot of other artists, you can build networks and so on. In Bochum you are more or less on your own. But that gives you a lot of freedom to create something extraordinary. * This interview is based on a questionnaire sent to the participants in the panel discussion on current literature inspired by the visual arts and music, which took place at the New York Public Library on November 17th during the Ninth Festival of New Literature from Europe in New York. Dr. Marek Bartelik is a New-York based art critic, art historian and poet. He currently serves as President of AICA International, an association of art critics with 63 national sections worldwide.
January 25 A ghost from the past: I am Goya of the bare field, by the enemy’s beak gouged till the craters of my eyes gape I am grief I am the tongue of war, the embers of cities on the snows of the year 1941 I am hunger I am the gullet of a woman hanged whose body like a bell tolled over a blank square I am Goya January 22 January 19 No words: January 18, Eating what I consider good food has been such an important part of my life–it makes me worried. January 12 One of the most remarkable (in a quiet way) man died 20 years ago. January 11 It’s Friday evening in Arequipa. It’s quiet here. I only hear the rushing down mountain stream outside of the posada. The volcano is sleeping. January 10, Today I went to see “Juanita,” the oldest body preserved. She was in a refrigerator, off the site, e.g.outside of the Catholic University of Santa Maria in Arequipa, where she is usually exhibited in a freezer donated by the Japanese. Another “frozen” girl (in a lotus position) replaced her. The experience of seeing her was incredibly strong. She had died at the age of around 15 some five hundred years ago, and, then, had been buried under the snow, until the volcano ashes melted the snow and exposed her body. On my way to the museum, I saw a religious procession: January 1 Uruguayan leader Jose Mujica lives on a ramshackle farm owned by his wife and gives away 90% of his $12,000 (£7,500) monthly salary. His water comes from a well. “If you don’t have many possessions, then you don’t need to work all your life like a slave to sustain them, and therefore you have more time for yourself,” he said. December 24 “When a writer is born into a family, the family is finished.” December 16 I must admit, I do not understand how some people can think that some lives are more precious than other….. Those people get hysterical about deaths of the few, because those tragedies happen close to where they live, and completely oblivious to deaths of thousands, because they are killed far away from their homes. December 10
Visit: http://www.brooklynrail.com December 6, I am so glad that Cooper Union’s students are striking back. A great school with a great tradition deserves better. November 22, A gift from a friend:
"The white sheet of paper, harsh mirror gives back only what you were. The white sheet talks with your voice, your very own, not the voice you'd like to have; your music is life, the life you wasted. If you want to, you can regain it: concentrate on this blank object that throws you back to where you started. You travelled, saw many moons, many suns, touched dead and living, felt the pain young men know, the wailing of women, a boy's bitterness- what you felt will fall away to nothing unless you commit yourself to this void. Maybe you'll find there what you thought was lost: youth's burgeoning, the justified shipwreck of age Your life is what you gave, this void is what you gave: the white sheet of paper." George Seferis From "Three Secret Poems"- "Summer Solstice"
November 10-16 New York Public Library Panel at the Instituto Cervantes, 16 November: “A procession of small men climb a hill, one following another. The first man reaches the cliff and keeps walking; others follow him. A question: why do the men follow the first one if they know that it is impossible to walk in the air, that they must fall down and die? The answer: Because they do not know that we have reached the end of literature.” As told by Dumitru Tsepeneag
November 7 Artistic Fictions/Fictional Artists: Panel Discussion on current literature inspired by the visual arts and music. Saturday, November 17th, 2:30-5pm New York Public Library, South Court Auditorium (42nd and 5th Avenue, New York, NY) With the participation of writers from Austria, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Poland, Romania, Spain, and Switzerland. Moderated by Marek Bartelik Free to the public For more information visit: http://www.newlitfromeurope.org October 27 I need to rethink my ideas about social justice after my trip to Caracas… October 25
“La Asociación Internacional de Críticos de Arte/Capítulo Venezuela,
invita muy especialmente a sus miembros y amigos a una reunión con motivo de la visita a Venezuela del
Dr. MAREK BARTELIK, Presidente de la Asociación Internacional de Críticos de Arte
el día Viernes 26 de octubre, a las 5:00 pm, en la Galería Arte Ascaso, Las Mercedes.
Será una ocasión muy especial para intercambiar ideas acerca de AICA y la crítica de arte”.
September 18 Souvenirs from Cuba/ May 2012: September 15 September 12 I have instinctively feared those quiet people, who–as we know–are capable of extreme cruelty, when they fear that their interests are being threatened. That’s why I have decided to record the living history of AICA. September 10 Vanity and loneliness (in this order) have thousands of faces on Facebook. September 9 To support Pussy Riot’s action is to lower the level of the political discourse to infantile. September 8
September 7, Elections time: I finally turned on the TV. How obscene it is that the Democrats talk about President Obama trailing in the polls because the Republicans are raising more money for their campaign than they do. Can they look straight in my eyes and say that they care about democracy. How cynical we have became… August 29 Left: Artists Arthur Summereder and Katharina Schild and curator Yannis Arvanitis. Right: Marek Bartelik, president of AICA, architect Penny Petrakou, and Culture Hotel Pythagoras director Alexandros Stanas. Source: Cathryn Drake’s “Scene&Herd”; www.artforum.com August 28 New York makes me smile: Yesterday, I noticed a personal trainer in my gym, who was chubby. He worked with a woman who was in perfect shape. August 22 Kassel: August 20 “The British say they have no choice but to extradite him but why didn’t they extradite Augusto Pinochet?” Rafael Correa August 14 A very short story from Greece in distress I asked the young waitress if I could order a la carte. She said that there was only one option for dinning at that restaurant on Friday nights: a buffet. “But I am not that hungry,” I replied. She smiled. “Could I have something small and pay just for that. I want to eat a little. I need to loose some weight.” I smiled. She said that only the manager could decide if that would be possible. I asked her to bring the manager, as well as a glass of white wine and a small bottle of still water. The manager was as young as the waitress. A Greek girl in her mid-twenties, Mediterranean looking. She spoke very good English. She told me to go and get what I wanted to eat from the buffet and then she would tell me how much I would need to pay. Glancing with total disinterest at trays with moussaka, fried calamari, French fries, lamb chops, and spaghetti with meatballs, I put on my plate several slices of tomato and cucumber, two staffed grape leaves, a small portion of tzatziki, and a piece of bread. I returned to my table, had a sip of white wine, and called the waitress to ask to bring back the manager. She came right way, assessed my plate, and said gently: “Tonight you don’t need to pay for your food, just for the wine and the water. And tomorrow, we will see. “ August 10 Souvenir from the AICa Congress in Zurich. Photo ©Edward Rubin August 7 Back from Greece July 15 Waiting in line to enter dOCUMENTA (13). Getting frustrated. My all senses already activated, including impatience, followed by anger. July 7 Programme
MONDAY 9 JULY 2012 – Commissions and Board Meeting
|Morning||Meetings of the Commissions|
|14.00 – 18.00||Board Meeting, University of Zurich, KOL F 172|
TUESDAY 10 JULY 2012 – Congress, 1st day
Coordinators / moderators: Patrick Schaefer and Claudia Jolles
|9.00 – 9.45||Registration : At the entry of the congress room, KOL F101|
|9.45 – 10.15||Official Opening|
|– Message of M. Francesco Bandarin, Sous-Directeur général pour la Culture de l’UNESCO, read by Marek Bartelik, President of AICA International – Marianne Burki, Pro Helvetia – Samuel Herzog, President AICA Switzerland|
|10.15 – 11.00||Keynote speaker: Richard Dyer (UK)|
|11.00 – 11.30||Coffee Break|
|11.30 – 13.00||Speakers:|
|– Victoria Verlichak (Argentina) ¿Desde dónde escribo? – Chris Fite-Wassilak (USA) The English critic Stuart Morgan – Alessandra Simões (Brazil) Challenges for “day by day art critical”|
|13.00 – 14.00||Lunch|
|14.00 – 16.30||Speakers:|
|– Pablo Sigg (Mexico): 3 casos críticos – Nomusa Makhubu (South Africa) ‘I Will Not Say Discourse’ – The Venom in Restless Text – Malene Vest Hansen (Denmark): Double Agent The question of the critic’s “accent” in relation to the art scene it is produced for – the framing of the text in local papers or art magazines with international scope. – Emil Sennewald (France): Do the limits of my language mean the limits of my world? Reprise d’une lettre concernant la critique d’art|
|Tour to art in public space with the responsible for art in public space in Zurich, welcome reception|
WEDNESDAY 11 JULY 2012 – Congress, 2nd day
Coordinators / moderators: Fiona Siegenthaler and Dora Imhof
|9.30 – 10.15||Keynote Speaker: Kim Levin (USA) TALKING TRASH: BYPRODUCTS FROM THE DISPOSABLE CENTURY|
|10.15 – 10.45||Coffee break|
|10.45 – 12.45||Speakers:|
|– Varsha Nair (Thailand) Sketching lines – Rifky Effendy (Indonesia) A Response to the Text of Hello Globe – Aveek Sen (India) Talking of Michelangelo – Gao Shiming (China)|
|13.00 – 14.00||Lunch|
|14.00 – 16.30||Speakers:|
|– Ieva Astahovska (Latvia) Between Centers and Peripheries. Accents, Dialects and Different Voices Writing Art History(ies) – Eva Khachatryan (Armenia) Latest transformations of public space in Yerevan – Ahu Atmen (Turkey) The Indigestible Masterpiece – Aida Eltorie (Egypt) Working Title: The Salad of Provocation – Nadira Laggoune (Algeria) Ecrire sur l’art, écrire sur soi|
|Visiting Kunsthaus Zürich: Bice Curiger will introduce in her exhibtion «Deftig Barock. Von Cattelan bis Zurbarán. Manifeste des prekär Vitalen»|
THURSDAY 12 JULY 2012 – Congress, 3rd day
Coordinator / moderator: Linda Schädler
|9.30 – 10.30||Speakers:|
|– Liam Kelly (Ireland) – Royce Smith (USA): The Evolution of Global Perspectives in the Age of the Contemporary Biennale|
|10.30 – 11.00||Coffee break|
|11.00 – 12.00||Speakers:|
|– Catherine Hug (Switzerland): Artzine Renaissance in the Age of Internet and Social Web – Verena Kuni (Switzerland): MAKE ME LAUGH (SERIOUSLY!) Writing With An Accent : Humour|
|12.00 – 13.00||Lunch|
|13.00 – 13.30||Intro-presentation to Documenta|
|13.30 – 16.00||Documenta 13 Round Table:|
|– Petra Kipphoff, Christian Saehrendt, Barbara Basting, DRS, Samuel Herzog, NZZ, Konrad Tobler, frei, Tages-Anzeiger, Swantje Karich, FaZ|
|16.00 – 16.30||Award Ceremony|
|art in public spaces tour|
FRIDAY 13 JULY 2012 – General Assembly
|10.00 – 13.00||General Assembly: University of Zurich, KOL F 101|
|13.00 – 14.00||Lunch|
|14.00 – 14.30||Sylvie Mokhtari: Presentation: Archives de la critique d’art|
|14.30 – 16.00||General Assembly|
SATURDAY 14 JULY 2012 – Post Congress
|12.00||Train leaves from Zurich|
July 5 Interview in Beautystreams experts-june2012-marek_261480 May 26 On Cuban national television: http://www.cubatv.cu/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=19641:inglaterra-y-cuba-nuevos-horizontes-en-las-artes&catid=18:culturales&Itemid=163May 25 Going Back to Rio de Janeiro: ABCA RIO 2012 – 28 a 29 de junho – FCRB PROGRAMAÇÃO 28/06/2012 Credenciamento 9h30 às 10h Mesa de Abertura Dr MAREK BARTELIK (AICA), Presidente da AICA Drª LISBETH REBOLLO (USP), Presidente da ABCA Drª ANGELA ANCORA DA LUZ (UFRJ), Vice-presidente da ABCA Dr CARLOS TERRA (UFRJ), Diretor da EBA/UFRJ Drª MARIA CRISTINA VOLPI (UFRJ), Coordenadora do PPGAV/EBA/UFRJ Sr WANDERLEY G. DOS SANTOS (FCRB), Presidente da FCRB Drª ANA PESSOA (FCRB), Diretora do Centro de Memória e Informação FCRB Ms JOSÉ NASCIMENTO JÚNIOR (IBRAM), Presidente do IBRAM 10h às 12h Conferência Internacional Dr MAREK BARTELIK (AICA) Mediadora – Drª Lisbeth Rebollo (USP) May 14 Back from Oxford, on my way to Havana: May 6 VolcanoPoster April 14 I have been thinking about it for quite a while: the poor and the rich, 99% and 1%. The ratio is perverse, because it produces an unclear cut between “them” and “us.” The question “who are “we”? is complicated. Take the example of traveling on a plane today. There is “first class” and “business class” (I have tried it number of times by now) for the 1% and there is the so-called “economy class” for 99%. The difference is in service (not just in larger seats and better meals). It is HUGE. The majority of flight attendants serving the economy (themselves members of the 99% club) are simply rude, treating passengers like cattle. It is the most evident on the flights operated by the US carriers, and MUCH less for airlines like the Turkish one. (Let’s have a discussion who is “underdeveloped.”) This is a perfect example of how that large portion of the 99% club, which always “votes” against their own interests, takes frustrations on the fellow ones, rather than the 1% they still hope to be… I am thinking about it getting ready (emotionally) for a crazy travel season this summer. April 4 Before political correctness, there was Artur Szyk (1894-1951): April 3 Last night at the Asia Society: March 30 Tonight at the Carnegie Hall: On March 30, iconoclastic composer and artist Meredith Monk joins host Michael Tilson Thomas and members of the San Francisco Symphony for the New York premiere of her Realm Variations, a piece that features voice and piccolo. March 26 Panel in Paris: Daniel Buren, Orlan, Genevieve Breerette March 25 My blog has been restored to the March 8th version! March 24 U. S. ART CRITICS ASSOCIATION (AICA-USA) ANNOUNCES AWARD WINNERS ——————————————————————————————————————————- The awards ceremony, which has been held annually for more than 25 years, will take place at the Asia Society in New York on April 2 2012 at 6 PM. Awards will be presented by a group of distinguished artists and curators. Artist Michael Smith will serve as emcee for the evening. Museum curators, artists and critics from around the country are expected to attend. A select number of seats will be available to the public. Members of the public may contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about attending the event. The breaking news have been announced on Arts Beat published on line by the New York Times. ——————————————————————————————————————————– MARCH 15, 2012 — NEW YORK: The US section of the International Association of Art Critics/AICA-USA announces its annual awards to honor artists, curators, museums, galleries and other cultural institutions in recognition of excellence in the conception and realization of exhibitions. The winning projects were nominated and voted on by the 400 active members to honor outstanding exhibitions of the previous season (June 2010-June 2011). The 24 winners of first and second places in twelve categories, selected from over one hundred finalists, include exhibitions focusing on contemporary artistsChristian Marclay, Sarah Sze and Al Weiwei, the 20th century artists Pablo Picasso, Sonia Delaunay, Kurt Schwitters, and Paul Thek, as well as thematic exhibitions dealing with history of drawing through the twentieth century, contemporary Japanese art, and Fluxus. Awards will be presented by Lowery Sims, Peter Plagens, and Sanford Biggers. This year’s Nominating Committee included art critics: Eleanor Heartney (Chair), Marek Bartelik (AICA-USA President), Rebecca Cochran, Peter Frank, Francine Miller, and Susan Snodgrass. Sponsored by ISSEY MIYAKE USA Corp. _____________________________________________________________________________ The Association is pleased to announce the following winners of its 2011 AICA Awards BEST PROJECT IN A PUBLIC SPACE Sarah Sze, Still Life with Landscape (Model for a Habitat), The High Line, New York, NY (June 8, 2011 – June 2012), Curator: Lauren Ross Ai Weiwei: Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads, Pulitzer Fountain, Grand Army Plaza, New York, NY (May 2 – July 15, 2011); Project Organizer: Larry Warsh/AW Asia BEST SHOW IN A NON-PROFIT GALLERY OR SPACE Bye Bye Kitty!!! Between Heaven and Hell in Contemporary Japanese Art, Japan Society, New York, NY (March 18 – June 12, 2011); Curator: David Elliott Ursula von Rydingsvard: Sculpture 1991-2009, SculptureCenter, Long Island City, NY (January 23 – March 28, 2011); Curator: Helaine Posner BEST SHOW IN A UNIVERSITY GALLERY Fluxus and the Essential Questions of Life, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH (April 16 – August 7, 2011); Curator: Jacquelynn Baas Perpetual Motion: Michael Goldberg, University Art Museum, California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, CA (September 9 – December 12, 2010); Curators: Chris Scoates and Elizabeth Anne Hanson BEST ARCHITECTURE OR DESIGN SHOW Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY (May 4 – August 7, 2011); Curators: Andrew Bolton with the support of Harold Koda Color Moves: Art and Fashion by Sonia Delaunay, Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, New York, NY (March 18 – June 19, 2011); Curators: Susan Brown and Matilda McQuaid BEST SHOW INVOLVING DIGITAL MEDIA, VIDEO, FILM OR PERFORMANCE Stan VanDerBeek: The Cultural Intercom, MIT List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge, MA and Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, Houston, TX (February 4 – April 3, 2011 and May 14 – July 10, 2011); Curators: Bill Arning and João Ribas Yael Bartana: A Declaration, “Conversations at the Edge” at theGene Siskel Film Center, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL (March 10, 2011); Project Organizers: Andrea Green and Amy Beste BEST SHOW IN A COMMERCIAL GALLERY IN NEW YORK Christian Marclay, The Clock, Paula Cooper Gallery, New York, NY (January 21 – February 19, 2011); Producer: Paula Cooper Gallery Picasso and Marie-Thérèse: L’Amour Fou, Gagosian Gallery, New York, NY (April 14 – July 15, 2011); Curators: John Richardson and Diana Widmaier Picasso BEST SHOW IN A COMMERCIAL GALLERY NATIONALLY Theaster Gates: An Epitaph for Civil Rights and Other Domesticated Structures, Kavi Gupta Gallery, Chicago, IL (April 30 – July 11, 2011); Curators: Kavi Gupta, Julia Fischbach, Peter Skvara, and Theodore Boggs Lari Pittman: New Paintings and Orangerie, Regen Projects, Los Angeles, CA (September 11 – October 23, 2010); Curators: Lari Pittman and Shaun Caley Regen BEST MONOGRAPHIC MUSEUM SHOW IN NEW YORK Paul Thek: Diver, a Retrospective, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY and Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (October 31, 2010 – January 9, 2011 and February 5 – May 1, 2011); Curators: Elisabeth Sussman and Lynn Zelevansky Glenn Ligon: AMERICA, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY (March 10 – June 5, 2011); Curator: Scott Rothkopf BEST MONOGRAPHIC MUSEUM SHOW NATIONALLY Blinky Palermo: Retrospective 1964-1977, Dia Art Foundation and the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College (June 25 – October 31, 2011); Curator: Lynne Cooke Kurt Schwitters: Color and Collage, The Menil Collection, Houston, TX (October 22, 2010 – January 30, 2011); Curators: Isabel Schulz and Josef Helfenstein BEST THEMATIC MUSEUM SHOW IN NEW YORK On Line: Drawing Through the Twentieth Century, MoMA, New York, NY (November 21 – February 7, 2011); Curators: Connie Butler and Catherine de Zegher Chaos and Classicism: Art in France, Italy, and Germany, 1918-1936, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY (October 1, 2010 – January 9, 2011); Curators: Kenneth E. Silver, assisted by Helen Hsu, and Vivien Greene as curatorial advisor BEST THEMATIC MUSEUM SHOW NATIONALLY Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture, National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C. (October 20, 2010 – February 13, 2011); Curators: David C. Ward and Jonathan D. Katz The Deconstructive Impulse: Women Artists Reconfigure the Signs of Power, 1973-1991, Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase, NY (January 15 – April 3, 2011); Curators: Helaine Posner and Nancy Princenthal BEST HISTORICAL MUSEUM SHOW NATIONALLY The Steins Collect: Matisse, Picasso, and the Parisian Avant-Garde, SFMOMA, San Francisco, CA, Musée Nationaux-Grand Palais, Paris, France, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY (May 21 – September 6, 2011, October 5, 2011 – January 22, 2012, and February 28 – June 3, 2012); Curators: Janet Bishop, Cécile Debray, and Rebecca Rabinow Franz Xaver Messerschmidt 1736-1738: From Neoclassicism to Expressionism, Neue Galerie, New York, NY (September 16, 2010 – January 10, 2011); Curator: Guilhem Scherf March 8
An interesting debate about our panel this evening. http://traverses.blogs.liberation.fr/yves_michaud/2012/03/quand-le-critique-prend-la-place-de-lartiste.html
Vladimir Visotsky “Capricious Horses”:
Along the edge of the cliff, over precipice I hurry my horses, I rush them ahead. I need more air, I drink wind and swallow fog; With ominous delight, I feel Im vanishing Slow down, slow down a bit, my horses, Dont listen to the snaps of lash! But my horses are so capricious, I didnt finish living, I cannot finish the song. I will get them water, I will finish my song, And will stay another moment on the edge. I will perish, and hurricane will blow me away, like a flake; My sledge will dash ahead in the morning snow. Please ease your pace, my horses, Extend my journey to the last refuge. Slow down, slow down a bit, my horses, Let lash and knout not be your rulers! But my horses are so capricious, I didnt finish living, I cannot finish the song I will get them water, I will finish my song, And will stay another moment on the edge. We are on time paying visit to God, no one is late. But what are those angels singing there, in such mean voices? Or is this the harness bell, just crying and crying? Or is this me, yelling at my horses to slow them down? Slow down, slow down a bit, my horses, I beg you not to dart ahead! But my horses are so capricious, If I didnt finish living, can I at least finish the song? I will get them water, I will finish my song, And will stay another moment on the edge.
March 1 The 2012 Whitney Biennial looks like a giant installation, highly chaotic and inconsistent, which is nothing new, once again reflecting an ongoing trend among the curators to use art as a statement to illustrate their ideas, rather than featuring artworks in a traditional group show, where they are carefully arranged to showcase their individuality and, at the same time, to relate to each other. The statement made this year is: don’t make any art that looks aesthetically pleasing–beauty is out, who can agree what beauty stands for. Don’t craft” your work, make it look shabby, but deliberately shabby. Boring art is good, because it does not deal with passion, which seems to be out of fashion (it rhymes). As always, there are few exceptions: Eric Gober’s curatorial project and Joanna Malinowska’s video, the latter one quite easy to miss in the labyrinthian arragnegemt of the show. The Visual chaos reflects the mental chaos in a spectacular fashion. February 22: Thinking about Brasilia: February 19 I have been thinking about the “old, good times” and came across this relic: February 13
February 1 If you really want to understand what’s wrong about this country, you need to hear Bill Maher telling his audience that he does not see anything wrong with the American soldiers peeing on the corpses of the dead Taliban insurgents. January 25 Happy Birthdy Allochka: January 19 The secret logic of exhibiting art around the world: Taryn Simons’ (represented by Gogosian Gallary) exhibition at the Multimedia Art Museum in Moscow January 10Sacred Heart University:
View online image gallery of Voices in the Streets
Opening Reception:Sunday, January 22, 1 – 3:30 PM; Jazz by Carol Sudhalter Duo; Curator’s Talk at 3:30 PM
THE POLISH CULTURAL INSTITUTE NEW YORK in partnership with the Austrian Cultural Forum New York presents BELARUS: ART DURING DICTATORSHIP A Panel Discussion January 29, 2012, 4:00 pm Austrian Cultural Forum New York New York, January 5, 2012 – The Polish Cultural Institute New York and Austrian Cultural Forum New York are proud to present ART DURING DICTATORSHIP – a panel of artists, curators, critics and activists who will discuss the recent developments in contemporary Belarusian art that have emerged in response to political and economic turmoil, state-initiated mass repression and abuse of human rights. The discussion will focus on artists’ courageous positions and contributions to the popular protest movements in Belarus against the dictatorial regime of President Lukashenko, and on the possibilities for individual artists and for communities of artists to act under state repression. The panel is presented in conjunction with the exhibition Sound of Silence: Art During Dictatorship at EFA Project Space (www.efanyc.org). The panel participants are: Nelly Bekus, philosopher and cultural critic, is an Assistant Professor at the University of Warsaw. Born in Belarus, based in Poland, she holds a PhD in Sociology. She is the author of numerous publications on Belarusian identity, and on media, culture and politics in Belarus and abroad, among them the book The Struggle over Identity. The Official and the Alternative Belarusianness (CEU Press, 2010). Sergey Shabohin, artist, editor-in-chief of the portal of contemporary Belarusian art Art Aktivist (www.artaktivist.org). Born and based in Minsk, Belarus, he is currently a curator at Minsk Gallery “Ў”. His works will be presented in the exhibitionSound of Silence: Art During Dictatorship. Tatsiana Kulakevich, co-founder of the Belarusian-American Youth Association, which works on democracy and human rights in Belarus. Born in Belarus and currently based in the US, she holds an M.A. in Political Studies from New YorkUniversity. She has worked for Amnesty International USA in New York and has conducted research as part of the Belarusian Institute of Arts and Sciences. Olga Kopenkina, curator and art critic. Born in Belarus and based in the US, she holds an M.A. in curatorial studies fromBard College. She has curated numerous shows in Belarus, Russia and the US and has published in such periodicals asMoscow Art Magazine, Manifesta Journal, Modern Painters, and Afterimage, as well as in exhibition catalogues and books. She is currently an adjunct professor at the Steinhardt School of Education, New York University. She is the curator of the exhibition Sounds of Silence: Art During Dictatorship. The discussion will be moderated by Marek Bartelik, art historian and critic, President of AICA International. Prof. Bartelik holds a PhD in Art History from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He teaches history of art criticism at MIT . He has also taught art history at the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in New York and Yale. He has published numerous books and articles, among them The Sculpture of Ursula von Rydingsvard (co-authored with Dore Ashton and Matti Megged; Hudson Hills Press, 1996); To Invent a Garden: The Life and Art of Adja Yunkers (Hudson Hills Press, 2000) and Early Polish Modern Art: Unity in Multiplicity(Manchester University Press, 2005) Presented by the Polish Cultural Institute New York and the Austrian Cultural Forum New York. January 9
January 6 New Year’s Eve 2011. Photo Bogdan Konopka January 2 El día en que alguien querido muere nos sentimos sin palabras. Pero, el silencio absoluto es imposible, entonces hablamos, con la esperanza que las palabras contengan nuestro dolor, o al menos, que nos permita compartirlo con otros. Haydée Venegas nos dejó el 31 de diciembre de 2011. Con su muerte perdimos una colega, una amiga, una crítica de arte, una educadora, y un ser humano precioso. Por muchos años, Haydée fue un miembro clave de AICA: Tesorera de AICA Puerto Rico y Vice-Presidente de AICA Internacional y recientemente, Tesorera de AICA. Como Tesorera, continuó involucrada en nuestras actividades diarias hasta el último momento de su vida. Nosotros, los que viajamos a nuestro último Congreso en Asunción, Paraguay, la recordaremos vívidamente desde allí, ya que, a pesar de estar ya muy enferma, Haydée iluminaba cada día con su increíble optimismo y su gran sentido del humor. Nada equipara la generosidad de una sonrisa de una persona encarando la mortalidad. Nuestras profundas condolencias a la familia de Haydée, sus amigos y colegas en Puerto Rico. Hoy, nosotros, todos los miembros de AICA, lamentamos su muerte con profunda tristeza. AICA llevará a cabo un breve memorial para Haydée durante nuestra Reunión Administrativa en marzo. A continuación hemos publicado e-mails, recibidos por AICA durante los últimos días de algunos de nuestros miembros que conocieron a Haydée muy bien y que la admiraron mucho. La vamos a extrañar. Marek Bartelik, Presidente de AICA Internacional
December 20: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-zz9vdpA3U December 18, Two people died yesterday. December 17from art territory.com
The Free Hunter of Meanings
Interview by Sergej Timofejev 15/12/2011 Marek Bartelik PhD is the President of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA). During the Art and Reality forum, arterritory.com took the opportunity to ask him a few questions about his road to a career in art criticism from… his previous job in civil engineering, as well as his preferences in contemporary art, Marek Bartelik’s distinctive approach to selecting the subjects of his art critiques and his thoughts on where the Rembrandts and Cézannes of our time are hiding. There is usually a system to the way in which people tend to set about building a career in the arts: they attend some sort of classes, art circles, then move on to professional training and complete their studies while still in their twenties. As far as I know, things were a bit different in your case… Yes, I first spent two years at École des Beaux Arts in Paris and then went back to theUSA. I wanted to choose something quite specific and practical and decided that civil engineering was just the thing for me. I graduated formColumbiaUniversityand worked for some three or four years worked at a company that dealt with bridge construction. At some point I realised that it was over. It was around the time that I had a very intriguing conversation with this artist I interviewed inParis. He was 92, I was 30. He asked me how old I was. I told him and expected to hear that I was still very young or something along those lines. What he said, however, was: ‘Well… It’s time for you to focus on things you really want to do with your life.’ I went back toNew Yorkand, after another couple of months on the job, quit. And the whole of my previous life collapsed. And I started doing what I really wanted to do. It was by no means easy. Getting a PhD is way more complicated in theUSAthan it is inEurope; first you have to complete a multitude of courses in a number of disciplines. It took me some ten years or so. And yet this turnabout was probably the best thing I had done in my whole life. During my study years, I was asked by Art Forum to write a piece, which made me feel that I was no longer just a student – I was also already a professional. And yet my technical education was also not wasted on me: it taught me to discipline and focus my thinking; I also had acquired a taste for logics… I do think that, in some occupations, a second professional training may be quite important. It allows one to mix and combine certain skills. It is probably the same old left hemisphere – right hemisphere thing. In my life, it really does work. On the other hand, I am perfectly aware that I would never, ever go back to engineering… Because you are not likely to get to apply your art critic skills? Or, more likely, because I was too fascinated with design, the appearance of things while I was working in civil engineering. So now you are teaching and writing for art publications? Yes. I have been writing for Art Forum for over twenty years now, and it is a fantastic magazine. I love it that they let me write the way I like and on subjects I like. Which is the reason why I only write art reviews when I am travelling. I go someplace – toSaint Petersburg, for instance – visit art shows and look for something interesting to write about. Like a free hunter? Quite. It is, in a way, an adventure. I love it that I do not have a preconception of what I have to see. I just walk around and look at things. And if I happen to write an article on someone who has not been covered by Art Forum as yet, an artist from Riga, say – all the better. For instance, I recently did a piece on a young female artist from South Korea; it was only her first or maybe second solo exhibition. It is a nomad way of doing my job. And I love it that I am free not to belong to a single place, a single scene; it makes it possible for me to escape the status quo of the system: I am constantly on the move. When in theUSA, I only write articles on the history of art criticism; I write and publish books and yet I never review American art shows. >> There was this opinion voiced today at the forum that an art critic cannot maintain a friendly relationship with the artists he reviews… I don’t agree with that. I know many artists who, apart from creating interesting art, are also essentially very interesting people. They are not in the slightest interested in perpetual adulation; what they are interested in is dialogue. Anyway, I am not particularly aggressive in my critique; a conversation between two friends can sometimes be quite intense as long as it is based on mutual understanding. For me it is a privilege to write about someone whom I know; after all, I believe in this person. And everybody has their ups and downs. Take Robert Rauschenberg – he is an outstanding artist and yet sometimes he is brilliant and sometimes terrible. Jasper Johns, on the other hand, was always the same, and I find him somewhat boring. That is why I prefer Rauschenberg. He varies, and that is what makes him more human. Anyway, we all benefit from being reminded once in a while that we are actually not something mega-special. Who are your favourites in this century? I just completed an extensive essay on Cai Guo-Qiang who works with gunpowder and explosions. I went to see him work in Donetsk, in Ukraine. That was a fantastic project they did there in an abandoned mine. What he did there was engage in a kind of dialogue with socialist realism. He asked a number of local artists working in the traditional manner create portraits of miners. And then he transformed these pictures into his gunpowder images. The result was an installation in a huge industrial setting; as you enter, you see these portraits of ‘blown-up miners’… It is for this dialogue with traditional art that I like his works. Cai Guo-Qiang was born inChina, and he knows the value of both tradition and avant-garde. If you take away the ideology, socialist realism can be a pretty noteworthy art. It may not suit everyone’s taste; however, it is an interesting way of looking at things. There are lots of camouflaged, hidden things in socialist realism. Gender themes, the dynamics of these kinds of subjects are also represented in socialist realism quite significantly. Cai Guo-Qiang is exactly the type of artist with whom I would love to sustain a perpetual dialogue. One of my fellow lecturers at the college where I teach is the Lebanese-born Walid Raad. He completely won me over with a video of his. It is a story of a spy in Beirut, an agent whose job is spying on people walking on the famous promenade along the seashore, a nice place for an evening walk. You see everything through the eyes of the spy, all those different people walking by. The spy, however, is a bit of a softie; he has this weakness for sunsets. And every time he sees a sunset, the camera moves from people (‘subjects’) to the sun that is going down. That is an excellent piece: poetic, definitely not silly and not too long, as so often is the case with videos. There is a brilliant exhibition by Willem de Kooning running currently back home. There has been quite a discussion going on regarding his final pieces: did he or didn’t he paint them himself. He had Alzheimer’s, and there is this possibility that someone else was physically moving his hand during the actual painting. The works are very different from the stuff he did earlier. Now, there is an interesting subject: what do you actually use to create art? Is it your hand or your brain, or perhaps both? In this case, someone else was guiding his hand. So do these paintings actually belong to him? In my personal opinion, yes, they do. >> What is happening with the discourse of art criticism? Has it changed significantly since you first started writing? Yes, things have changed. Critics now have to react, respond to events so much faster than they used to. And there are fewer periodicals to publish your articles. There is only one art critic among the staff of the New York Times Newspaper; the rest are freelancers. And that’s the largest of our newspapers. Magazines also do not employ art critics. Since the emergence of blogging, many critics have been writing art blogs; however, as they would tell you, they have no idea how long they will be able to afford doing that: they have to do something else to earn their living. Also, due to this need for instant responding, so typical for the internet, paradoxical situations tend to arise. An art blogger confessed to me that he was scared of someone else writing a piece on the same subject and publishing it first. Can you imagine that? And if you are scared of that, you end up living in fear: there will always be a chance of someone being quicker than you. This anxiety – it is probably not just typical for art critics today; it is in the air. And the surest way of self-assertion today is to come up with new keywords, new terms that fit a problem or describe some sort of new art fact, and everybody else will start repeating it after you. And then you become famous. I recall the Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa and I think that, with his slow and melancholy style of writing, he probably would not have become famous in our time. His verses are completely devoid of any urgency of communication; all communication takes place on a completely different level there. And I think that this sort of opposition to this ‘urgency of account’ makes sense. On the other hand, I have noticed a new trend of critics starting to write their texts like fiction, introducing elements of inventions, sometimes even a proper storyline. You can make up a whole personal art universe; you can write your critique as a story. My new book features a chapter on an imaginary artist although the rest of the characters are quite real. You mentioned during the discussion that you sometimes use a similar approach in teaching when you are telling your students about art… Yes, and sometimes I worry that I may be ‘mixing up their coordinates’ too much. I do think, however, that they should always be given an opportunity to make up their own mind. How do you do it? You want me to give you an example? Well, for example, there was this class when I showed my students a drawing of an elephant by Rembrandt, having first clipped it so that it did not include the animal’s tail. I said to them: ‘Look at the brilliant way Rembrandt was working. To show the elephant’s giant size, he cut off the tail in his picture.’ And later someone googled the drawing and found out that the tail was actually still there. Of course, I don’t do this sort of thing very often. However, I do think that these little catches for imagination, for critical evaluation of the ingested information are really necessary. What it also shows is that art can become a sort of separate reality. We are attending a conference on art and reality here. Yes, they do have occasional points of intersection. And yet they exist separately. And I am teaching my students art, I am not teaching them reality. Of course, education is not a copy/paste of things said by the teacher. You have to process them and check if they are actually true. It also has to do with feelings, not only with the brain, as well as with the fact that teaching is passing on not only knowledge but also the understanding that this knowledge alone is not enough, that there is this space of search which we enter together. Of course, I may be more experienced in this, having been around for a longer time. And yet we have to discover things together. When we start teaching, we forget that the most memorable moments have actually always been about things not going quite right. The professors I personally liked best as a student were the ones notable for a certain eccentricity of behaviour: they could do bizarre or even silly things. And it is they who I remember, not the ones who were paragons of perfection. >> Quite a few negative things have been said here, at the conference, as to the ability contemporary art to interact with reality, describe it in its own language. All these endless installations and video screens that do not make any sense unless you read a page of the curator’s explanations first… What do you think of that? Yes, contemporary art can sometimes be somewhat dry or, rather, somewhat empty. It is very much sensation-orientated, built according to the principle of ‘fast delivery’. It only has to be packaged in the right way to become a reality, to become ‘art’. There is another trend, however, which turns to, I would say, spirituality. It may also be quite dangerous as the whole thing can knock against religiosity. There are quite a few artists going that way in search of the fourth dimension referred to by Malevich in his time. As for video, it is a relatively easy medium – easy to distribute. You can send your DVD wherever you want while an installation, sculpture or painting takes some physical exertion to be transported. I sometimes find it hard to keep my attention focused on a video if the piece is nor very well structured. If it happens to be a simple story someone wants to tell me, I’d rather watch some news or a good movie perhaps. I don’t need to visit an art gallery for that. The new media actually demand an incredibly deep level of understanding what you are doing, and artists often do not think about that: to them, it is the easy way. It is the same with installations. It looks easy, and yet it is incredibly hard to create a really good installation. I don’t think that contemporary art is, say, ‘colder’ than it used to be. The thing is, there is so much of it produced that it is quite hard to figure it out what really is going on or what is the point of it all. In all, I would say that we are currently living in an age of mannerism. People are not making real breakthroughs, they are busy ‘crossbreeding’, hybridising stuff. That will, of course, change. Hard to say in which direction the whole thing will go, though. And, by the way, that is yet another reason why I am teaching: I want to see what my students are doing. This way, I am also learning – from them. I have no intention to tell them what to do. On the other hand, it is simply necessary to be famous today, even in art criticism. If you are not very famous, no-one will ever read your texts, people are not that curious. And therefore, unless you are famous, there is a very little chance of you being heard, getting noticed. And yet we constantly hear voices asking where the Rembrandts and Cézannes of our time are… Yes, Rembrandt and Cézanne worked very hard and long to become the artists they were. Today, there is an incredible pressure on young artists; the very situation they find themselves in demands that they strive for ‘success’, and it does paralyse them to an extent. They stop growing and don’t develop into the Cézannes and Rembrandts of their time. Admittedly, young artists today use a much more diverse visual language, and yet it takes the same intense focusing on their profession it did in those times. They need space to grow in. The very paradigm of the way the artist operates in the society has changed. Of course, it is easy to judge for us. And yet I cannot predict which of the contemporary artists will still be remembered thirty years from now, who will be considered key figures. As far as I am concerned, I hope it’s not Jeff Koons or someone like him. Now, that would be a pretty sad testimony of our time, of who we were. >> In Latvia, there was a huge explosion of interest in the new media from the mid-1990s onward. It seems to me now that the focus has somewhat shifted to painting, for example, to moderately sized pictures influenced by naïve art… Are there similar trends in the USA? It makes sense to look for parallels in history. While the 1970s were the age of conceptual art, the 1980s were marked by the return of painting. And when people started to analyse how that had come about, they arrived at the conclusion that in many cases the changes could be traced to art galleries which had long since realised that they could not sell conceptual art: the pieces were insufficiently material and compact, they looked too esoteric. And the galleries said: ‘It is time to go back to painting!’ And then neo-expressionism emerged, and so on. To a considerable extent, the whole thing was staged. Perhaps it would be wise to try and figure out how much of it is actually a natural development and to what extent it is a a market-imposed strategy that influences young artists who follow its lead. Because everyone is informed that ‘there are similar trends in art galleries everywhere’… I would put a question mark there. Perhaps the problem is that art had become too political or esoteric and insufficiently ‘materialised’. I don’t see a potential of escape in painting. It is nothing more than one of a number of currently existing parallel forms of expression. Although it is, of course, easier to separate the good from the bad in painting. I think it also has to do with the subject of questions and answers. Contemporary art as we know it – installations, video, performances – is more about asking questions, topical questions at that. The audience, however, experiences a deficiency of answers. Perhaps painting is more like an answer. Yes, perhaps it is a return to the original impulse, to a more personal kind of art. When an artist is painting in a studio, he exists in a world of his own. And it is a more sensual kind of art. For instance, the sense of smell is involved in it. The Greeks said that art had to smell. If you take a piece of marble and start to work with it, the stone does release a smell. The difference between American and European art lies, among other things, in its attitude toward smells. In Europe it is quite acceptable. In America, we think that there should be no smell. It is the same with cheese: we eat the same cheeses, except they are pasteurised: they must not smell. People are afraid of anything with a smell. In Europe, on the other hand, art sometimes still has a smell, and that’s a good thing… As for predictions and theorising, I prefer to see first and then respond to it, having processed the impressions. In the 1980s, the famous American art critic and curator Barbara Rose mounted an excellent exhibition titled ‘Painting in the 1980s’; it also toured throughout Europe. And then, in the late 1980s, she put on another show, this one under the title of ‘Painting in the 1990s’. Now, that was a complete fiasco. All the artists and works she thought would play a major part in the 1990s faded from significance during the actual decade. And I wouldn’t like to find myself in a similar role of the failed predictor. It is like a relationship: you are dying to know how things are going to work out. But it’s impossible to tell someone: be this kind of person, and then I will like you. The same thing with art… The final question: how did you become the President of the International Association of Art Critics? That’s a good question. I don’t really know. I spent the greatest part of my life trying to be a very private person and avoid getting seriously involved in organisations of any kind. And then at some point I realised that if I wanted to do something in this area, it had to be then. Because ten years from now, I won’t feel like doing that kind of work; I will probably be more inclined to focus on my poetry, etc. I attended a number of international conferences as a representative of our chapter of AICA. And we talked. And I felt that people seem to like my ideas. I was elected in October 2011 at the AICA congress in Asunción, Paraguay. It is both a great honour and a huge challenge for me. My life is changing once again, like it did when I was 30. I am 55 now, and that’s great – it is the beginning of a new adventure. December 7, My new life… December 7, Visiting the Arab Museum of Art in Doha. December 6 Cai Guo-Qiang in Doha: November 27, Back from St. Petersburg: November 19
TAKEN IN BY A URINAL
Film director and producer Andrei Konchalovsky shares his views on art criticism ahead of an annual art forum.By Olga Panova The St. Petersburg Times Published: November 9, 2011 (Issue # 1682)
It’s difficult nowadays to find a good art critic with an original point of view, according to film director and screenwriter Andrei Konchalovsky, organizer and curator of the Art & Reality Annual International Forum. On the eve of this year’s forum, which takes place in St. Petersburg from Nov. 25 to 27 and focuses on the topic of art criticism, Konchalovsky talked to The St. Petersburg Times about the modern art critic, conforming and the fate of Russian art. Why was St. Petersburg chosen as the location for the forum? Petersburg is the European capital of Russia. St. Petersburg is in every way the “window to the west,” and it is intellectual. The Boris Yeltsin Presidential Library kindly offered to host the event as it was specially created for this type of intellectual meeting. Why now, in 2011, is it so important to draw the public’s attention to the problems of contemporary art and the figure of the art critic in particular? When we think about art critics, it is necessary to notice that they are becoming more and more uniform. Bright names are vanishing. Critics with independent, self-sufficient, maybe even controversial but interesting points of view on art are very rare. Some years ago, 200 art critics were asked to name an outstanding work of contemporary fine art. The number one choice was … Marcel Duchamp’s “Fountain” [a urinal]. I believe that half of these critics inwardly, secretly don’t agree that the most outstanding product of the 20th century is a urinal! I consider it a shame to give in to the conformist herd instinct, a dictatorship of political correctness, a fear of going against the grain and looking unmodern. It seems they know what Duchamp wrote in 1962: “I have thrown a urinal in their faces and now they admire its aesthetic perfection.” That is frank recognition that the young Duchamp wasn’t trying to express his representation of beauty and its comprehension, he simply wanted to spit in the face of critics and viewers, which was necessary in order to shock them. To tell the truth, shame on them, or rather, maybe they should be pitied. What do you think the participants of future forums are going to be like? People who have something to say, who are capable of expressing their point of view on modern art, on the condition of the relationship between critics and modern art… Also those who have nothing to add, but want to learn and listen, because for them the forum is no less important than for the ones who are going to speak. What is your vision and image of the contemporary art critic? It doesn’t seem to me that a modern art critic should differ from an “unmodern” art critic. Just as they did a hundred years ago, they should sincerely try to understand the artist, the creator, instead of paying attention to what is fashionable at the moment. Unfortunately, the majority of critics today try to outdo each other with their knowledge [of art] instead of simply trying to explain and understand the artist in a humanistic way. If they don’t understand it, it’s better to say, “I do not understand,” than to write an infinite number of pages of intellectual masturbation about this modern conceptual “masterpiece.” What perspectives and new opportunities will the forum offer young participants? It will enable them to think a bit more about the fate of European and Russian fine art in particular — where it’s going and if it’s possible to estimate the losses already incurred. Of what interest is the forum to professionals in the art market? I don’t know, I am not a professional. I am just a thinking person. Is the forum dedicated to international development trends in the art market, or is it mainly focused on trends in Russia? What are its main features and problems? I don’t know. I am not an art dealer. I only know one thing: The trend that can be labeled the “art of marketing art” is becoming more important and almost like propaganda. The art of marketing has become more important than the art itself. This is clear if we look at what kind of artists are becoming best sellers today. I have already made myself hoarse saying that [artistic] fraud is on the rise. People are charging high prices for pieces that shouldn’t even be called works of art. The Art & Reality Annual International Forum takes place from Nov. 25 to 27 at the Boris Yeltsin Presidential Library, 3 Senatskaya Ploshchad. M. Sennaya Ploshchad / Sadovaya. Tel. 305 1621. For more information or to register for the forum (before Nov. 15), visit www.aifaar.com. November 17 He reminded me after his lecture: “You are only as good as your last work.” Photo Kasia Szczesniak November 12,
November 5, The photographer was already drank: http://www.artdaily.com/index.asp?int_sec=2&int_new=51500 November 2 Cooper Union students strike back: no tuition. November 1 More pictures from Paraguay. Asunció, le 2 novembre 2011, Art Media Agency, (AMA). L’international association of Art Critics (AICA) a élu le Dr. Marek Bartelik comme nouveau président durant l’assemblée générale du 20 octobre 2011 qui s’est tenue à Asunció, au Paraguay. L’AICA est une ONG créée en 1950 sous le patronage de l’UNESCO. L’association a pour mission de soutenir la liberté d’expression des critiques d’art et d’assurer la diffusion et la diversité. L’association compte 4500 membres, et 63 sections différentes réparties mondialement. Le Dr. Bartelik succède à Yacouba Konaté, président de l’AICA depuis octobre 2008. Arrivé aux États-Unis en 1985, depuis 1996 Marek Bartelik dispensait les cours d’art moderne et d’art contemporain à la Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art de New York et a enseigné à l’université de Yale. Après avoir accepté le poste de président, Marek Bartelik a rappelé son engagement et son envie de renforcer l’AICA comme plateforme vitale dans l’expression d’idées sur l’art et sa critique dans notre société ainsi que l’importance de viser toujours plus haut dans les standards d’excellence de la critique. October 26
AICA International, Paris, 27th October 2011 Executive Bureau : President : Marek Bartelik - USA (2011-2014) Treasurer : Haydee Venegas - Puerto Rico (2008-2012) General Secretary : Brane Kovic - Slovenia (2010-2014) International Vice-presidents : Carlos Acero Ruiz – Dominican Rep. (2011-2014) Adriana Almada – Paraguay (2010-2013) Niilofur Farrukh – Pakistan (2009-2012) Liam Kelly – Ireland (2009-2012) Burcu Pelvanoglu – Turkey (2010-2013) Lisbeth Rebollo – Brazil (2010-2013) Myrna Rodriguez – Puerto Rico (2011-2014) Angus Stewart – United Kingdom (2009-2012) Jin Sup Yoon – South Korea (2011-2014) Elected Members of the Board for 2011/2012: Marianne Brouwer (Netherlands); Therese Hadchity (Southern Carribean) ; Silva Kalcic (Croatia); Klara Kemp-Welch (UK) ; Byoungsoo Kim (South Korea) ; Marja-Terttu Kivirinta (Finland) ; Albán Martínez Gueyraud (Paraguay) ; William Messer (USA) ; Elena Oliveras (Argentina) ; Malene Vest Hansen (Denmark). The full version of the updated organisation chart is available on AICA website at the following link : http://www.aica-int.org/spip.php?article3
September 26 Back from lecturing at the Isolyatsia in Donetsk and visiting Cai Guo-Qiang’s exhibition there. September 20 It is true: “all roads lead to Rome.” I saw it… September 19 September 17, I found this delightful quote from Delacroix while preparing a lecture for my students: “To be a poet at twenty is to be twenty: to be a poet at forty is to be a poet.” September 13 The Willem de Kooning retrospective at MoMA: painting is definitively alive. Richard Hamilton dies at 89. Press opening covered by Jill Krementz: http://www.newyorksocialdiary.com/node/1907434 September 11 September 8
|PANEL DISCUSSION | THE BIENNALE DE PARIS IN THE USVISUAL/INVISUAL: DO WORDS PRODUCE ART?AUSTRIAN CULTURAL FORUM IN NYCFRIDAY SEP 30, 07:00 PM|
The organizers of the Biennale de Paris argue that innovative art does not need material presence. Instead, it should be a practice in a form of a series of ongoing workshops and debates–such as the one this panel is intended to be. They believe that words that are being used in art today are insufficient to describe their practice and propose a new vocabulary: the invisual, non-artistic-art, etc. After defining those key words for the public, the panelists will address the question whether such “dematerialization” threatens art to turn into a dry intellectual exercise or if it elevates art to new levels of significance. Panelists include: Alexandre Gurita, Ghislain Mollet-Viéville, Jean-Baptise Farkas, and Marek Bartelik (moderator). tbc. Biennale de Paris (the Paris Biennial) is a nomadic event that, unlike its original iteration as established in 1959 by André Malraux, migrates around the world. It is often referred to as a “biennial without artworks,” for it is organized as a series of discussions and workshops, with no direct aim to produce art in a traditional sense as an art object or performance. Its participants set their own dates for their activities. The 17th Biennial has been taking place between October 1st, 2010 and September 30th, 2012 in several countries, including the United States. PANELISTS: Visual Culture/ Invisual PracticeMarek Bartelik Critic, art historian, and poet. He teaches at Cooper Union for the Advancement of Sciences and Art in New York. President of the US section of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA-USA) and Vice President of AICA International. Regular contributor to Artforum. The invisualAlexandre Gurita Director of the Biennale de Paris. He calls himself “Strategist in the field of art.” Graduate of the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris (1999), and the National Institute of Art in Bucharest (Romania, 1992). Lives in Paris. Non-artistic artGhislain Mollet-Viéville Art critic and collector; member in the French section of AICA International. Regular contributor to Art Press. In 1994, his apartment near the Beaubourg Center in Paris, which served as a unique exhibition space between 1975 and 1992, was recreated with the art collection it hosted inside the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MAMCO) in Geneva, Switzerland. Lives in Paris. To operateJean-Baptiste Farkas Artist. Operates under the art names IKHÉA©SERVICES and Glitch (Much more of less!). President of the Amicale de la Biennale de Paris. He teaches at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts de la Réunion. Lives in Paris. For more information on the Biennale de paris, please visit www.biennaledeparis.org __________________________________________________________________ AICA-USA’s President Marek Bartelik will deliver a keynote speech during the 44thAICA International Congress, which will be held in Asunción (Paraguay) and will run from October 17th until October 20th. The theme of the Congress is “Art and Criticism in Times of Crisis.” During the event, AICA International will present its first Distinguished Critics Prize, which will be awarded to Mr. Ticio Escobar, a former President of AICA Paraguay and current Minister of Culture in that country. The Cuban artist Tania Bruguera will present the Prize to Mr. Escobar. The post-Congress trip will be to Curitiba and Porto Alegre (Brazil) between October 21 and October 26. The program includes visits to the Curitiba and Mercosul Biennials, as well as a tour of the Iberé Camargo Foundation.
September 7 Back to art and life. I guess it’s time to take on Andy… July 5 Two recent exhibitions: Miguel Palma and Adam Niklewicz June 27 What happened JPC? June 21 Leaving Rome: June 20 In Saint Peter’s Basilica nuns glow: June 19 June 18, The pope, the lover, and the masterpiece: June 17, The Stendhal syndrome … in Rome. Yet to verify. May 28 New release, with my introduction: May 27 AICA Meeting and panel at the Rubin Museum of Art in NYC Photo Michael Palma Photo Lisa Paul Streitfeld May 22 Roman’s pics from Colombia: May 20 May 15 … Around him, an emptiness blew, in which a man finds himself when he is going to create. Desolated, he provoked the great solitude. (…) And, like an old man who has not learned to read, he measured the distance that separated him from the word. [A maçã no escuro – The Apple in the Dark] May 10 There is no beauty in war pictures. May 3 Who is smiling back? Lynda Benglis’s show at the New Museum. April 24 www.carlitocarvalhosa.com April 23 “In art it is hard to say anything as good as saying nothing.” April 14: “I have my experience writing for on line sites and have talked with several bloggers. To keep people coming to site, you need to feed them daily.” Not for me. Time to think about Mark Rothko: April 13 “Gentle Rain” turned into a nasty storm in New York City yesterday evening. The book launch at the Polish Consulate in NYC: April 12 http://www.change.org/petitions/call-for-the-release-of-ai-weiwei#?opt_new=f&opt_fb=t April 9 After returning from Boston, I am thinking about Martin Johnson Heade:
There is something annoying about this:
April 4 Konsulat Generalny RP w Nowym Jorku oraz Instytut Kultury Polskiej w Nowym Jorku zapraszają na wieczór autorski MARKA BARTELIKA poświęcony jego najnowszej ksiązce “ŁAGODNY DESZCZ” Spotkanie poprowadzi Agata Galanis-Ostrowska Konsulat Polski w Nowym Jorku 233 Madison Avenue. New York, New York 10016 Wtorek, 12 kwietnia 2011: 19:00 do 22:00 RSVP: (646) 237 21 12 April 3 AICA-USA Panel Discussion during the 2011 Conference on International Opportunities in the Arts: The Interconnected World in Boston “What a New Generation of Young Art Critics Thinks”: a panel discussion during 2011 Conference on International Opportunities in the Arts: The Interconnected World (April 7-10, 2011) at Boston’s Omni Parker House Hotel organized by Transcultural Exchange. The AICA panel is sponsored by The Brooklyn Rail. What is the role of young critics in the current art world? The panelists will discuss their relevance as vital voices shaping our understanding of contemporary art. Thursday, April 7, 1:30 – 3:30 pm The Boston Public Library, Room C05/C06, Boston, MA. Moderator: Marek Bartelik, President, the National Chapter of the International Art Critics Association (AICA). Panelists: Greg Lindquist, Patricia Milder and Abbe Schriber. Panel coordinator: Greg Lindquist, critic and artist, member of AICA-USA April 2 http://artscape.jp/focus/1231895_1635.html March 29 “Ksiazka Marka Bartelika, nadzwyczaj osobista, jest piekna impresja na temat naszego miejsca na swiecie. Autor, ktory od trzydziestu lat podrozuje, poznal i Francje i Stany i Brazylie, ktora wydaje sie bliska jego sercu… Ale tak naprawde, mam wrazenie, wciaz szuka… Nielatwo byc obywatelem swiata, o czy wiedzial juz Norwid! Ksiazke polecam, jest jak jedwabny szal, przyjemny, ale jakze latwo z rak sie wymyka!” — Anonimowy czytelnik “Marek Bartelik’s book, extremely personal, is a beautiful impression on the subject of our place in the world. The author, who has travelled for last thirty years, is familiar with France, the United States and Brazil, which appears to be close to his heart… But in fact, I am under the impression, he is still searching… It is not easy to be the man of the world, what Norwid already knew. I recommend this book, which is like a silk scarf, so soft, yet it slips off our hands so easily.” First review of “Lagodny deszcz;” e-splot
March 25 Pictures from AICA Awards, March 14, 2011; © Jacques de Melo
March 23 “J’écris en écoutant Astrud Gilberto. Elle chante à propos de la « gentle rain », de la « douce pluie » qui tombe si souvent à Rio de Janeiro. Les paroles comptent peu: ce qui compte le plus, c’est la musique et la chaleur du timbre de sa voix, comme une pluie qui tombe en-dehors de l’histoire, au-delà des événements, et nous laisse jouir de l’instant. Elle nous invite au pays des rituels magiques, des esprits favorables, peut-être même dans l’univers de quelque religion et de ses prêtres jaloux. Cette pluie bienveillante éveille nos sens avec tendresse, idéalement, mais en même temps avec fermeté, concrètement, comme la plume attachée au casque de Goliath caresse l’intérieur de la cuisse de David sur le socle de la célèbre sculpture de Donatello, au Musée Bargello de Florence. Ce n’est pas un hasard si je m’en souviens ici. C’est une façon d’augmenter l’acuité de mes sens et, en même temps, de rendre hommage au narrateur en moi, celui qui porte le récit, gardien de l’indépendance de l’art et aussi de ce texte. « Nous avons l’art afin de ne pas être détruits par la vérité », affirmait Nietzsche, qui se méfiait de Platon.” The book launch at the Polish Library in Paris and the dinner afterwards.
March 12 After the earth shook Cherries are decapitated No stem remains Trains have turned into toys March 2 “Wonderful weather outside indeed, but I have to stay in front of my computer. This reminds me of an Italian hit from the 60s (50S?) “Tintarella di luna” (“Moonlight tan”). For me, it’ll have to be “Tintarella elettronica.””–an e-mail from a friend from Paris March 1 AICA-USA Panel Discussion “What a New Generation of Young Art Critics Thinks” during the 2011 Conference on International Opportunities in the Arts: The Interconnected World in Boston “What a New Generation of Young Art Critics Thinks”: a panel discussion during 2011 Conference on International Opportunities in the Arts: The Interconnected World (April 7-10, 2011) at Boston’s Omni Parker House Hotel organized by Transcultural Exchange. The AICA panel is sponsored by The Brooklyn Rail. What is the role of young critics in the current art world? The panelists will discuss their relevance as vital voices shaping our understanding of contemporary art. Thursday, April 7, 1:30 – 3:30 pm The Boston Public Library, Room C05/C06, Boston, MA. Moderator: Marek Bartelik, President, the National Chapter of the International Art Critics Association (AICA). Panelists: Greg Lindquist, Patricia Milder and Abbe Schriber. Panel coordinator: Greg Lindquist, critic and artist, member of AICA-USA. February 27 Annual AICA awards ceremony, a fixture of the American art world for more than 25 years, will take place this year at a new venue, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, on March 14 at 6 PM. For the first time, the awards will be presented by former AICA honorees, including Shirin Neshat, Martin Puryear, Christo and Linda Nochlin, and the ceremony will include video performances by Sooja Kim and William Kentridge. Many artists, including Marina Abramovićand Cai Guo-Qiang, will accompany the curators of their shows as they accept their awards in person. Elizabeth C. Baker, the former editor of Art in America, will receive a special Lifetime Achievement award for her distinguished contribution to the field of criticism. February 22