Tag Archives: lazy

CHARLIE HEBDON’T

10 Feb

Marines_do_pushups

Occasionally it seems there might be some kind of counter-performance art organisation, one that actively does everything it can to bring performance art into disrepute. A bit like SPECTRE from the James Bond books and films. As suggested by their acronym Special Executive for Counterintelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion, SPECTRE mainly just wants to instigate conflict and benefit from the chaos that ensues. I propose that there is a secret organisation called SPESPA (Special Executive for Shit Performance Art) and it exists solely to make the general public think all performance artists are twats.

This week’s covert SPESPA operative bent upon ruining live art’s reputation is Chinese performance artist (and “former television presenter”, which gives you some idea of his likely intellect) Ou Zihang, who has been doing push-ups in the nude at the sites of recent terrorist attacks in Paris. No surprise that he’s a fellow traveller of overrated hack fraud attention whore Ai Weiwei, who recently incurred the displeasure and disgust even of the normally unbothered and amoral art mainstream art press by playing at being a drowned toddler on a beach on Lesbos. Ou’s one and only artistic gambit involves getting undressed and doing push-ups in front of things. That’s all he’s got.

Ou obliquely but amusingly let slip the real reason he does naked push-ups, and it ain’t art or “drawing attention to scandals.” When he started doing naked push-ups near the offices of Charlie Hebdo and outside the Bataclan, he was dreadfully disappointed not to be arrested:

“Normally, there are police officers, security guards, cameras in front of a sensitive place. Especially in a country that is currently in a state of emergency. But, in the end, there was no control or restraint. This puzzled me.” (French source.)

In other words, without causing a scene and being the centre of attention he is nothing. His only validation is in being told he’s annoying, following the Dorian Gray school of thought that “there is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.” I imagine Ou only gets arrested in China because they think he’s being a tool, not because his adolescent level of critique and infantile means of resistance are any threat to the state. Plus, if he’d done any basic research he’d know that far from being shocked by nudity the French bloody love it.

Just sod off, you fucking imbecile.

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IMITATION IS THE SINCEREST FORM OF FLATTERY

24 Dec

PROBABLY

On the 23rd December 2014 I received the following image via the e-flux mailing list, that persistent inbox botherer nonetheless much loved by me for reliably delivering sheer gibberish art reviews and spambot-grade gallery press releases for me to make fun of. I have e-flux to thank for much of the nonsense to be featured in the forthcoming third series of Artbollocks Theatre.

Eflux

On the 24th September 2014, this image was uploaded to my blog. It originally featured in an episode of Artbollocks Theatre, in mockery of an artist who supposedly created “surprisingly deceptive planes.”

DeceptivePlane

Image: Alistair Gentry, 2014.

Wow, not only plagiarism but inferior plagiarism. Shia LaBeouf-tastic, my e-flux “comrades”! Nice to know you’re such fans of my blog and of Artbollocks Theatre, though. But maybe for her visual gag– such as it is– to work Ms. Lewis could have spent another thirty seconds in Photoshop to make sure the angle, lighting and orientation of the plane’s livery matched the geometry of the original (Creative Commons) photograph? Or to make it really blatantly a crude, unrealistic collage? You know, maybe commit properly to being one thing or the other? Or is it not cool to pay attention to details like this?

I think I just try too hard to do things well, that’s why I’m not as successful as some of the lazy hacks out there.

OMG, SRSLY?

16 Jan

OK you guys, I’m sorry but I may not be writing this blog for much longer because OMFG CAN’T BREATHE I’ve just been spotted by a talent scout! YO I GOT A GOLD LINK BITCHES. I’m getting exposure from just thinking about it…

TalentScoutsOnly joking, everybody. My real response was this: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha, ah, ah… ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha…

(CONTINUES)

*Taken to minor injuries unit, sedated and given oxygen*

(TWO HOURS LATER)

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“CRAPPY FINE ART”

11 Jan

A thought-provoking and informative article inspired by the recent $5.7 million sale of a most definitely crappy act of plagiarism by a technically capable but unimaginative hack (with plagiaristic form) of an original Chris Foss painting for a book cover. Although obviously the utter shithead who bought it for $5.7 million has to take a lot of the blame, too, along with all of his or her kind. Ultimately the artist is just servicing this plutocratic market and churning out high-end widgets that just happen to take the shape of art works, like a glorified McJob work experience boy. If he wasn’t doing it, somebody else would. See also The super-rich are never embarrassed.

“So what do *I* think of Glenn Brown’s appropriated art, referencing great SF illustrators? I could use the big put-downs from fine art school and call it commercially technical, overly kitsch and academic in its attempt at realism. I think it’s crappy fine art. But it’s crappy fine art borne aloft on millions of viral cat pictures and an internet culture of ripping and running with images without regard for the original creators. It’s the fine art we culturally deserve,  just as much as Warhol’s soup cans were fitting for the commercial-goods industrial era. Would I pay millions of dollars for it? Hellz no. But the momentum of post-modernism’s love of referencing, appropriating and remixing is what led it to be worth that much.”

Read the rest here, in Scientific American for no discernible reason:

http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/symbiartic/2014/01/09/how-plagiarized-art-sells-for-millions

TALKING BOLLARDS

31 Jul
awaiting_image

Image from the somewhat surreal http://www.thebollardshop.com. Get your Slough-style bollards there. Is it just me, or does the lack of scale references in this image and the way they’re clustered together suggest another, more “adult” type of web store?

Via Artquest, who themselves wryly and slyly editorialise that it’s “a load of bollards”, another fine opportunity to work for nothing and to create a hideous public eyesore courtesy of Lambeth council:

“We are removing hundreds of metal bollards from our streets in London Borough of Lambeth as a de-cluttering exercise. In the current batch of works, the number would be close to a thousand, and we will be removing many more in near future. These will be recycled by our highways contractor, unless we find a better use for them.

‘If anyone would like to use these bollards for some public art / sculpture, they would be more than welcome to have them for free, but we would like the artwork to be installed in Lambeth. If someone can come up with an idea for their use in public furniture, such as seating, planters, etc. then it would be another good use. Occasionally we also find some very old bollards with unusual designs and sizes.”

So let’s recap:

You’re de-cluttering the streets by removing functional bollards, then immediately looking to re-clutter the streets with “close to a thousand” non-functional bollards.

Lambeth Council apparently thinks public art and sculpture consists of just piling up old crap. You’re a local authority, not an Etsy vendor or a home makeover TV show. “Yeah, so I jazzed up this boring courtyard area with some art made from upcycled bollards…”

Planters? Perhaps you could give us some clues as to how one would turn a bollard into a planter? Do you have any idea what plants (or indeed bollards) are and how they work?

Of course there’s no mention of money, whether it’s the money they’re presumably trying to stiff their contractors of by not having them dispose of the bollards, or the money that a local authority should pay to an artist when they commission a work of public art from her or him. For reference, the same bulletin at Artquest also has advertisements for legitimate public art commissions in Belfast with a budget of about £40,000, and in Swansea with budgets of between £40,000 and £100,000. Do you know why? Because that’s what it costs in order to have a professional artist and the team of people who support that artist design, fabricate and install a major work of art in a public place so it will be durable, suitably sited and safe.

PS: The owner of monomaniacal blog Bollards of London is going to be seriously pissed off that they’re doing away with a thousand bollards.

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