What is the value of art?

Jeff Koons, "Three Ball Total Equilibrium Tank (Two Dr J Silver Series, Spalding NBA Tip-Off)", 1985   Image: themainevent.us

Teaching with Contemporary Art

How Much Is That?

Teaching with Contemporary Art

How Much Is That?

“How much is that?” or “How much is that worth?” are popular questions students ask, especially when teaching with contemporary art. Often I find myself embarrassed having to admit that …

problematic

Problematic: Answering Questions with Questions

Problematic | The Artist As Entrepreneur

Problematic: Answering Questions with Questions

Problematic | The Artist As Entrepreneur

Most artists assume the role of an artist, perhaps by going to school, perhaps by having a studio, or not. Bruce Nauman made it simple by deciding that anything he …

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment | Meet Me at the Met

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment | Meet Me at the Met

In homage to the recently-opened summer indie movie Horrible Bosses, I thought I’d dedicate this, my first column since the close of the spring semester, to that annual rite of …

Amy Whitaker, People Oostende, 2008, digital, courtesy the artist

The Space Outside Your Head: Some Concluding Thoughts

The Space Outside Your Head: Some Concluding Thoughts

Over the course of writing this blog, I have learned that many of my posts are about art and economics.  More broadly, they are about creativity and friendship, and how …

Amy Whitaker, Adam Smith Wears a Beret, digital, 2011. courtesy the artist

Adam Smith As an Artist

Adam Smith As an Artist

Part 2 of what art and economics have to do with each other. . . . A few years ago I came across a biographical sketch of Adam Smith, founding …

Amy Whitaker, Art Sign, digital, 2009, courtesy the artist

Better Not Bigger: What’s Next for Art Museums?

Better Not Bigger: What’s Next for Art Museums?

In the next two weeks, museum leaders gather in two places—art curators in New York May 15-17 and everyone in Houston May 22-25—to contemplate the future of the field.  How …

Amy Whitaker, "artist businessperson," photo, 2011.

Monday Painter/Sunday Banker

Monday Painter/Sunday Banker

I am so pleased to be a new guest blogger at Art21.  We were encouraged to introduce ourselves in our first blog post, and so I thought I would write …

Theaster Gates talking at Hard Truths: A Forum on Art and the Politics of Difference. IMA Photo by Tascha Mae Horowitz.

No Preservatives: Conversations about Conservation

Exploring the Freedom to Re-Present Value: A Discussion with Theaster Gates

No Preservatives: Conversations about Conservation

Exploring the Freedom to Re-Present Value: A Discussion with Theaster Gates

IMA art conservator Richard McCoy talks with artist Theaster Gates about Thornton Dial in relations to Gate’s art practice in

open-enrollment-banner.500

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment | Work after work after work…

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment | Work after work after work…

On Friday, April 8th, two members from Temporary Services, Brett Bloom and Salem Collo-Julin, gave a presentation on their practice at Outpost for Contemporary Art here in Los Angeles. The …

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment | On the Precipice of Reality: This and That

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment | On the Precipice of Reality: This and That

For this month’s post, I’ve mulled and pondered, thought and reflected, yet I could not come up with any sort of brilliant topic for my penultimate post. So I thought …

Street view of PiST///. Courtesy PiST///.

Turkish and Other Delights

Turkish and Other Delights | PiST///

Turkish and Other Delights

Turkish and Other Delights | PiST///

  PiST///Interdisciplinary Art Space is storefront gallery space and artist project co-directed by artists Didem Özbek and Osman Bozkurt. Opened in 2006, PiST/// is located in Istanbul’s Pangaltı neighborhood, a …

open-enrollment-banner.500

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment | On Access and Elitism

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment | On Access and Elitism

I recently visited the Tate Britain with a friend who studies history but doesn’t care much for modern or contemporary art. Standing in front of David Hockney’s Great Pyramid at …

Picasso's 'Nude, Green Leaves and Bust' (1932) at Tate Modern. Image Andy Paradise/PA

Letter from London

Letter from London: The Price is Right

Letter from London

Letter from London: The Price is Right

Funny how very expensive paintings become metaphors of themselves. The 45-million-dollar Duccio bought by the Met in 2005 shows the incarnate deity supported with infinite care by his reverentially gazing …

Image from Public Smog (2006). Courtesy Amy Balkin.

5 Questions for Contemporary Practice

5 Questions (for Contemporary Practice) with Amy Balkin

5 Questions for Contemporary Practice

5 Questions (for Contemporary Practice) with Amy Balkin

For the past couple years, I have been teaching Bay Area-based artist Amy Balkin’s work within a curriculum about environmental art and “land expropriation.” I teach her work besides Karl …

bad-at-sports-center-field.500

Center Field: Art in the Middle with Bad at Sports.

Special “Center Field” Podcast: Fielding Practice with Bad at Sports

Center Field: Art in the Middle with Bad at Sports.

Special “Center Field” Podcast: Fielding Practice with Bad at Sports

All of us here at Bad at Sports have loved working on our twice-monthly column for this blog, Center Field: Art in the Middle with Bad at Sports. It gives …

Front cover from Backtracking 1985, ARC/AIDS Vigil, UN Plaza. Courtesy Rigo 23.

5 Questions for Contemporary Practice

5 Questions (for Contemporary Practice) with Rigo 23

5 Questions for Contemporary Practice

5 Questions (for Contemporary Practice) with Rigo 23

I first encountered Rigo 23’s work this past summer staying with friends in San Francisco’s Mission, where Rigo 23 partially got his start as an artist through his engagement with …

nadine.dunes.low

Fostering Pragmatism: An Interview with Nadine Nakanishi

Fostering Pragmatism: An Interview with Nadine Nakanishi

Nadine Nakanishi has been working with Nick Butcher in their collaborative independent print shop since 2005. Under the shared moniker, Sonnenzimmer, they’ve made posters for such notables as Beach House, …

open-enrollment-banner.500

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment: So My Last Semester Lies Ahead, Then What?

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment: So My Last Semester Lies Ahead, Then What?

While I chip away at my thesis and look toward my last semester at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), I have begun to think of my …

Pamela Johnson, "Starlight Mints," 2008. Oil on canvas, 26 x 40 in. Courtesy of Pamela Johnson.

Connecting – Part 5: Effortless

Connecting – Part 5: Effortless

During the film My Kid Could Paint That (2007, Sony Pictures), New York Times chief art critic Michael Kimmelman said: I think the beauty of art is that it is …

The London protests heat up (image courtesy Antony Bennison)

Letter from London

Letter from London: Tuition and Hopin’

Letter from London

Letter from London: Tuition and Hopin’

This week, Britain’s coalition government (narrowly) passed a proposal to dramatically hike university tuition fees, the results of which were a number of occasionally violent protests in central London. The …

David Wojnarowicz, "Untitled (Face in Dirt)," 1990. Silver print, 28.5 x 28.5 inches. Courtesy P.P.O.W.

“I am the invisible being”: The Smithsonian, Wojnarowicz, and the Othering of AIDS

“I am the invisible being”: The Smithsonian, Wojnarowicz, and the Othering of AIDS

The decision of the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, G. Wayne Clough, to pull David Wojnarowicz’s video, The Fire in My Belly, from the Hide/Seek exhibition at the National Portrait …

open-enrollment-banner.500

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment: Research and Its Ambiguities

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment: Research and Its Ambiguities

For a few months now, my thesis project has hit a standstill. Unfortunately what I realized is that the stagnation of not working on it has started to corrode my …

open-enrollment-banner.500

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment: Coffee and Politics (Part 1)

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment: Coffee and Politics (Part 1)

Coffee and politics. They go together almost as good as politics and art. A week ago I met up with a good friend of mine for a cup of coffee …

Cal Poly Pomona students and staff march to the CLA building as they respond in an uproar to last weeks recommendations to cut the fine arts program at the school May 4, 2010. Image Via The Inland Valley Daily Bulletin.

Looking at Los Angeles

Students, Faculty, and Community Members Fight for Fine Art as University Administrators Question its Value

Looking at Los Angeles

Students, Faculty, and Community Members Fight for Fine Art as University Administrators Question its Value

00

open-enrollment-banner.500

Open Enrollment

What is Research and Creation?

Open Enrollment

What is Research and Creation?

My eyes are droopy and I’m over-caffeinated. This writing marathon is killing me and wrangling my brain.  To make matters worse, I haven’t left my house in a few days, …

Temporary Services' Library Project booklet cover. Courtesy Temporary Services and And Publishing

5 Questions for Contemporary Practice

5 Questions with Temporary Services

5 Questions for Contemporary Practice

5 Questions with Temporary Services

Art21 is pleased to announce our latest column: 5 Questions (for Contemporary Practice), written by guest blog alum Thom Donovan (bio here). 5 Questions showcases the work of contemporary practitioners …

Courtesy Waffle Shop

Recap: Creative Time Summit, Saturday October 9th, 2010

Recap: Creative Time Summit, Saturday October 9th, 2010

This past Saturday, I attended the Creative Time Summit at The Cooper Union in NYC, and I’m glad I did. Whatever one may say about Creative Time’s role in the …

Mike Brenner with his little buddy, the Bronze Fonz

The Bronzed Fonzie and Threats of Being Shived in the Shower

The Bronzed Fonzie and Threats of Being Shived in the Shower

The last year my art gallery, Hotcakes, was open, there were a number of significant yet manageable setbacks, but when Milwaukee’s Convention and Visitor’s Bureau got into the business of …

Mike Brenner's Hotcakes Tattoo

Running a Gallery on a Shoestring Budget

Running a Gallery on a Shoestring Budget

Mike Brenner tells some stories about how he survived financially while owning an art gallery.

Astrological Chart for Lin + Lam's Speculating Change Project

Pardon this Brief Commercial Interruption: Change

Pardon this Brief Commercial Interruption: Change

Lin + Lam (Lana Lin and Lan Thao Lam) are the current fellows at the Vera List Center for Art and Politics at The New School University in New York. …

Great Small Works, "The Toy Theater of Terror As Usual, Episode 9: Doom 1996, A photomontage news serial", created by John Bell, Trudi Cohen, Stephen Kaplin, Jenny Romaine, Mark Sussman, Roberto Rossi; first performed at Performance Space 122, NYC Photo courtesy of Mark Sussman

Flash Points

Pardon this Brief Commercial Interruption: Economies of Scale or Too Big to Fail?

Flash Points

Pardon this Brief Commercial Interruption: Economies of Scale or Too Big to Fail?

In 1934, Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis coined the phrase “the curse of bigness” to describe the disastrous effect that concentrated economic power can have on small business, communities, and …

Hans Haacke, "MetroMobiltan", 1985, Fiberglass construction, three banners, and photomural, 11' 8" x 20' x 5', Collection Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris.

Pardon this Brief Commercial Interruption: Intro

Pardon this Brief Commercial Interruption: Intro

The United States has always fostered a strange and ambiguous relationship to the arts.  In 1825, John Quincy Adams recommended that the country establish a national university, observatory, and other …

Marcel Duchamp, Tzanck Check, 1919. Pen and ink on paper.

What’s it worth? Artist and community currencies

What’s it worth? Artist and community currencies

The territory of art that responds to, comments on, and intervenes in the art market is vast. There are a range of practices in contemporary art that involve currency as …

ArtPrize 2009, Grand Rapids, MI. Photo courtesy of Brian Kelly.

ArtPrize: Reflecting On and Refining an Open Art Competition

ArtPrize: Reflecting On and Refining an Open Art Competition

Last August, I wrote a post on this blog called ArtPrize: An Experiment in Decentralized Curation and Competition. At that time, the team I work with was a month away …

A view of the chalkboards that covered the walls of the Winkleman Gallery during the #class exhibition. Visitors were welcome to write or draw what they wished on the boards. (photo via Jen Dalton)

Flash Points

Chatting with #class Co-Curator Jennifer Dalton about Ethics

Flash Points

Chatting with #class Co-Curator Jennifer Dalton about Ethics

Last week, the #class exhibition at the Winkleman Gallery closed after a month of functioning as New York’s laboratory for art world gripes, think tank for new ideas, and classroom …

Riyas Komu, "RK-193" from the "Mark Him" series, 2007. Edition 1/9, Archival print, 74 x 50 inches. Courtesy The Guild Art Gallery, Mumbai.

Flash Points

Athletes & Artists: Riyas Komu’s “Mark Him”

Flash Points

Athletes & Artists: Riyas Komu’s “Mark Him”

Flash Points contributor and University of Riverside professor Jennifer Doyle is currently spending 2 weeks in India, traveling with the Indian artist Riyas Komu. Following is the first in a …