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posted on 01.22.08

In his book, ‘Relational Aesthetics.’ Nicolas Bourriaud refers to art as and about the frame of art, the conditions that instantiate art itself. The artist sets about creating processes, procedures, formats, signs. In Bourriaud’s sense, art is about producing a relationship with the world, with objects, with time, with actions – this relationship to the world and its signs, produces the world. It is as if the world were made up of so many determinate and indeterminate instructions, institutions, formats and shapes.

When Benjamin Buchloh referred to the conceptual and minimal generation of the 1960`s, he defined the artist as a 'scholar-philosopher-craftsman' who hands society 'the objective results of his labour' . For Buchloh, this figure was heir to that of the artist as 'mediumic and transcendental subject' represented by Yves Klein, Lucio Fontana and Joseph Beuys. Recent developments in art merely modify Buchloh's hunch. Today's artist appears as an operator of signs, modelling production structures so as to provide significant doubles. An entrepeneur/politician/director. The most common denominator shared by all artists is that they show something. The act of showing suffices to define the artist, be it a representation or a designation.

The contemporary artist is a semionaut, he invents trajectories between signs.

The movement of a work, its trajectory 'The style of a thought is its movement' (Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari)

Having been an event per se (classical painting), then the graphic recording of an event (the work of Jackson Pollock with photographic documents describing a performance or an action), today's work of art often assumes the role of a trailer for a forthcoming event, or an event that is put off forever.

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