Art & Language: Five Edited Extracts.

As the discursivity of the text increased, so the remaining sense of it as ‘readymade-by-description-or-ostension’ weakened still further. Similarly, as the text ceased to function as a form that usurped the place of painting on the gallery wall, in the manner of one of Kosuth’s ‘Definitions’, so the legacy of the containing frame also diminished. As both effects weakened, so did the power of those formal constraints on the length of the text that characterised the ‘definitive’ post-Minimal genres of Conceptual art as they were established in New York between 1967 and 1969.…

Continue Reading →

katherine Jackson – This is the work. I don’t think so

“This is the work. I don’t think so.” When reading ICA Symposium’s title, “What Work Does the Artwork do? Criticality in Context,” a phrase from T.J. Clark’s Image of the People came to mind. Clark accounts for the radicalism of Gustav Courbet’s “Burial at Ornans” by suggesting, “…a certain world pressed in on him (Courbet) and gave him a different subject.”[1] Although Clark is referencing the socio-political ideological shifts of France in 1850-1, his sentiments are strikingly similar to Charles Harrison’s Essays on Art & Language describing art in 1960s and 70s in…

Continue Reading →

ʻGizza job, I can do that’

ʻGizza job, I can do that' - Employing art for semiotic work with its publics – A concrete poem by Jheni Arboine ‘Gizza job, I can do that, gizza job I can do that’, said Art dressed up as the ventriloquist’s doll. Its utterances permeated the space; a space of criticality, a place for crispy-criticality of jumping kangaroos, of hybridities and secret paintings. ‘So what work does the artwork do? How is it employed? What roles does art have? What is the purpose of art?’ A catechism of ritualized voicings, pervade the space,…

Continue Reading →

Jeff Gibbons – For this reason we persist

For this reason we persist. That somehow it is possible that from that scrap of cloth and oil on the wall a communication takes place about a complex notion. That in the STUFF of our existence, it moves from my mind/body/action to yours through this substance that is not specific and yet can be so precise. The seriousness of the endeavour is very beautiful. That a quality which otherwise cannot be communicated, is through paint. This is like the intangible precision with which musical composition and poetry can cause such attention, that a…

Continue Reading →

Denise Ackerl – Art (community); a revolutionary power or an illustration of powerlessness ?

“Revolutionary art should be revolutionary. That surely is a simple statement from which we can begin discussion.”1 But when is art revolutionary? One could argue that art activism is one of the starting points here, despite it being caught up in the continuous query of why it actually is art. There are many examples of art activism, or in fact passivism, such as the boycotts of the Sydney Biennale2 or the Manifesta 10 that eventually resulted in the production of anti-art, leaving the act of boycott as a vacuum for “real” activist artworks.…

Continue Reading →