In Inside the White Cube (1976) Brian O’Doherty claimed that in the course of modernism art had dropped from the walls and spread all over the gallery space, with exhibition photographs addressing a pure, disembodied gaze – the “eye”. Today it seems as if this eye has been replaced by the “camera eye”, with image frames having put themselves on spectators, museums and cities, constantly forced to perform like works of art in front of the camera to secure their presence in ever-evolving media spaces, to which the physical exhibition space is a mere appendix.
Looking into examples like Jay-Z’s Picasso Baby:Performance Art Film and Doug Aitken’s and Levis’ Station to Station, we will discuss what space is left for artistic freedom, reflection and dissent when brand management overwrites art production and reception.
Kolja Reichert (* 1982, lives in Berlin) is a freelance writer and art critic. He contributed to e. g. für Welt am Sonntag, frieze d/e, Die Zeit, Weltkunst and Tagesspiegel. In 2012, he was awarded with the ADKV-Art Cologne prize for art criticism.
Lecture in German
Exhibition Attention Economy, 16/5 – 9/6 2014, at Kunsthalle Wien Museumsquartier.