February 26, 2009

Me-me-me careerism vs. the new generosity

As the Guest Blogger at ART:21 today, I take a look at a few artists who embody the pragmatism and ingenuity of the new Obama administration. "Artists who garner the most attention in any given time period are those whose work, explicitly or implicitly, reflects the deeper political sensibilities of the era. Right now, contemporary artists to watch are those who have turned away from the traditional egocentric focus and embraced the communitarianism associated with Barack Obama’s campaign and now with his administration. Artists who project a me-me-me attitude and are consumed with obsessive careerism look shabby and regressive. While the art world rallied around commerce in the Bush years, it may zone in on community in the Obama epoch. Despite the demoralizing art market downturn, the art world has been infected with President Obama’s inclusive “Yes We Can” spirit, finally catching up with the small cadre of artists and art bloggers who were the first to adopt decentralized, community-minded art practices that fully embraced American pragmatism and ingenuity. If this shift is any indication, generosity may be the defining value of the new era." Read more.

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