Fraser Chapter 10

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S.R. That`s right. I`m not so much focusing on criticizing those gestures or this habitus, I`m more interested in how are these kinds of reception are influenced maybe through mass media, interests of the corporatization in the museums and so on. Where they are looking for young geniuses and things like that. That changed I think in the last five, six years, it changed.

A.F. In what way? That`s become more and more...

S.R. They want to emphasize these gestures like »I'm a genius. I'm doing totally new paintings, nobody saw something like that.« Many people are... – More and more people get used to this »Yeah, why not we have this so long discursive kind of art, now we can get back to a little bit more gesture and things like that.« And even if the people come back to retro-styles; different retro-styles, punk or the late 80s or whatever or go back to the 70s or so. They try to invent it. In Germany – I don't know how it is in English – but in Germany in the last three years, everybody is speaking about »Yes, you have to re-invent it, you have to start it new.« Things like that as if there is a kind of believing that it's possible to start from a tabula rasa, to start again, it's not possible.

A.F. I mean what I think its the most important critique to pursue now is to do what I don't recall being part of the discourse of the 80s, but of considering how these representations of artists and of artistic production are so closely linked to particular economic regimes. And I really see this sort of new spectacularized, celebritized vision of the artist as the free individual pursuing new forms of freedom and satisfaction, as being a sort of ideological figure of the neo-liberal subject in the age of globalization. Even though that's changing, in the past few years it changed a lot. Since the collapse of the internet economy and since September 11. But I think it's a very ideological representation - So the return to notions of originality, to the notion of the spontaneous creation and sort of the artist is a free subject, is extremely regressive. Actually it was part of the discourse of the 80s because we were talking about that in relation to neo-expressionism and Reaganism. So, in fact, what we have now, it's interesting. Okay, it's a kind of parallel relationship, but instead of neo-expressionism, instead of a set of artistic practices that are so patently aggressive as neo-expressionism was, you have that kind of ideological representation being produced around practices that in fact are the products of those practices in the 80s, of performance, video, installation, the whole range. And that's the difference, which is disturbing.


«Andrea Fraser