Things to Read

THIS IS A SOBERING LABOR DAY. We have seen the employment statistics. Somewhere under the rubble of numbers are artists—semi-employed, underemployed—supporting themselves with every imaginable odd job: a part-time adjunctcy here, another there; waiting tables; house painting; dog walking; carpentry—you name it. Yet institutions of so-called higher learning, keep turning out M.F.A. candidates on the false assumption that a faculty position awaits them. Exploiting popular delusion, Texas Tech University trumpets itself as the first to offer a doctorate in fine art.  Continue Reading
Art & Money

HERE I SIT WITH A HORRID LITTLE BOOK. Well, not so little at 300 pages but definitely unlikeable. Fine Art and High Finance by one Clare McAndrew was published this year by Bloomberg Press [yes, that Bloomberg]. Subtitled Expert Advice on the Economics of Ownership, it is a handbook on the global art trade meant for the financial sector. Dr. McAndrew explains:
The international art market is estimated to have turned over more than $60 billion in total sales of fine and decorative art and antiques in 2008, one of its highest-ever recorded totals.
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Chapel Americana

THE ARTS ARE AN ENDLESS SOURCE OF CHEAP GRACE. Like the ancient Celtic myth of Dagda’s cauldron, it is the pot that never empties. The most recent ladleful of pop spirituality is Dean Radinovsky’s Chapel Americana, a roughly 13 by 17 foot warehouse version of one of the sacred caves the artist had seen on a trip to Crete. Radinovsky completed his site-specific meditation space in 2008. His faux chapel is lined with formless abstract paintings, as vague and spacey as the word spirituality when it shows up in press releases. Continue Reading