12 Mar

Just a quick link without much commentary today, to something I wrote for a-n last summer but had completely forgotten about. It was a response to Lee Cavaliere’s Visions of the Future in the same magazine previously, so you might want to read that first.

While I understand that any manifesto is to some extent a provocation or a utopian document and while I do agree with some of Cavaliere’s points- perhaps even the majority of them- I also couldn’t resist taking the piss out of adolescent melodrama like “I will be allowed to paint” (yes, it is brutal and unjust the way those anti-paint squads come around every single time you pick up a brush, to kick in your door and defecate on your canvases. I mean, how do they even know?) or bourgeois, lefty drivel about the supposed truth that every human being is a unique and beautiful potential blossom with the nectar of creativity at their heart, e.g. “everyone will be allowed to sing and dance in public” (No thanks. That would be extremely inconvenient and annoying, or it would be like living in an episode of Glee that lasted your entire life, with no respite ever. In either case, a thousand times no. Not if I have any say in the matter or the  strength to resist such a ghastly development.)

“[1] Contrary to Cavaliere continuum, advertising and art became 
strictly separated, forming a particular contrast with the early 21st 
century’s rampant and mostly unpunished exploitation and plagiarism of 
the ideas and work of artists. The name for a person who creates art 
is “artist”. The name for a person who carries out the obsolete 
profession of “engineering improved sales for a product” is 
“advertiser”, not “creative” or “artist”. Artists never make work that 
resembles or could be mistaken for advertising, and vice versa. NB: 
advertising became extinct several centuries ago.


Read the rest at a-n.

But before you go, please note that I also love the standfirst saying

Artist, writer and ‘time traveller’, Alistair Gentry, responds to Lee Cavaliere’s Visions of the future.

with time traveller in those scare quotes, as if some of their readers might otherwise think I really was from the 26th century, or that the first Earth-Proxima Summit and the Deideation of the Eight Art Forms were real events. Indignant letter to the editor: “Dear a-n, I must complain in the strongest possible terms about your recent publication of work by an artist from the 26th century. Many artists born in the 20th century are struggling to make ends meet, find studio space and get their work exhibited, but now you are adding insult to injury by choosing to support a time traveller who works in a medium that doesn’t even exist yet. As a painter of seafront scenes and nice bunches of flowers who has not set foot in a contemporary art gallery for thirty years I already feel undervalued and marginalised by a-n’s constant coverage of contemporary art I don’t understand…”

One Response to “IN THE YEAR 2525”

  1. Alistair 12/03/2012 at 5:29 PM #

    I also note that my esteemed colleague Bedwyr Williams’ writing in the current issue of Frieze is also helpfully labelled “satire”, just in case any of their readers think he really did negligently kill an intern on his premises.

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