contemporary art theory


Michael Carini | Foreverandever | Acrylic on Canvas | 60" x 96" | 2014

The Carini Technique-As every story has a past, present, and future, what may at first glimpse appear to be non-objective abstraction is in fact segmentations of energetic imagery interacting through the boundlessness of space and time.


Hear the experts explain how Robert Rauschenberg blazed a new trail for art in the second half of the twentieth century.

From paintings including flashing lights to a stuffed angora goat, Rauschenberg’s appetite for incorporating things he found in the streets of New York knew no limits. Pop art silkscreen paintings of Kennedy sit alongside 1000 gallons of bentonite mud bubbling to its own rhythm. Rauschenberg even made a drawing which was sent to the moon.

So-called contemporary art does nothing but repeat Duchamp’s gesture by filling the museums, which are nothing but organs of the market devoted to accelerating the circulation of merchandise which, like money, have attained a state of liquidity and which they want to continue to value as if they were works of art, with non-works and non-performances. This is the contradiction of contemporary art: it abolishes the work of art and then puts a price tag on the result.

Giorgio Agamben, “God didn’t die, he was transformed into money”.

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Sven Stilinović
Marx and Stilinović, 1980
one of three black-and-white photographs, sheet of paper with text, corduroy cover encasing the images with title sheet the reads:

“The difference between effective demand based on money and ineffective demand based on my need, my passion, my wish, etc., is the difference between being and thinking, between that which exists within me merely as an idea and the idea which exists as a real object outside of me.” - Karl Marx, 1844

Art has become too ironical and unintelligible for its own communicative good: It only speaks to those in the esoteric know – those willing to play the art game. Narcissistically fetishized, advanced art loses relational purpose. Caught up in itself, it forgets the audience, which is expected to accept it on its own terms, uncritically: Whatever common ground existed between advanced art and the audience collapses. Holding up a mirror to itself rather than to the audience – as art has done since Aristotle noted the cathartic effect of the insight it afforded – art loses its audience. Thus, advanced art loses its foundation in human experience.
—  Taken from A Critical History of 20th-Century Art by Donald Kuspit.

Jean Baudrillard
Corbières, 1999
Giclée print on pure cotton paper
90 x 60 cm

“Is there still an aesthetic illusion? And if not, a path to an ‘aesthetic’ illusion, the radical illusion of secret, seduction and magic? Is there still, on the edges of hypervisibility, of virtuality, room for an image?”
–Jean Baudrillard, The Conspiracy of Art, 2005