Monday, May 06, 2013

I remember several years ago, in one of the high-profile graduate art programs where these lines are drawn, the program's sole Chicana student fleeing the seminar room in tears when her advisor sneered, "Your photographs are sooo sentimental. We're making art, not Hallmark Greeting Cards, here." The work in question was a photo of the artist's daughter who she'd left behind in Texas to attend the graduate program here. The child was bathed like a tiny angel in a radiant bubble of southwestern light. Days later she returned indebted and defeated to her border town of Texas, it never having dawned on her that anything is permissible in the contemporary art world so long as it is pedigreed, substantiated, referentialized. She could have said her photos were a performative restaging of the works of Walker Evans, recast in opposition to the appropriationist croppings of Levine from a feminine interiority. She could have said that she's been reading Gaston Bachelard, the French mailman who became the Father of Phenomenology; all that cozy stuff he wrote about dreaming underneath his featherbed in winter when the snow's piled up outside. You want sentiment? Bachelard's the Bambi of French theory. Etcetera.

Chris Kraus fra Video Green. Los Angeles Art and The Triumph of Nothingness (2004). Her et andet essay fra bogen i en charmerende opsætning, og her et Kraus-inspireret videoværk.

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