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READER BAMBALL SAYS IT AS IT IS WHEN IT COMES TO LISSON’S ‘SIGNATURE’ WORKS OF (FINE?) ART:

‘Things look too slick, too cool, too polished. Too manufactured. Even the color and materiality of the work–imagine if this work was created in 1967, and I am discovering it through a black and white grainy image in the reviews section of a ratty old art magazine, I think it might look to me more interesting then. This to me is as thrilling as most new fine art “painting” done with an iPad, than printed on a high quality printer. Give me some texture, some obfuscation, some sense of meaning seething up and out of the work, fighting its way out. There’s a disjunction between the multi-syllabic adjectives and the final forms. No mystery. No texture. We need more grit, a feeling like there was physical labor involved, that the conceptual nature of the work is literally “breathing” its way out of the formal nature of the work, leaving us believing there was an artistic struggle involved between the making of the form and the conceptual thought of the idea. In the old hand-drawing days of architecture, we obviously had to draw, but seriously, we used to erase more than we drew, in order to get it all just right in the end. I don’t buy the sincerity of the words because we aren’t given a final formal nature that seriously looks as complex and tortured as what it purports to be in word-form. Those words are so obviously written by a hired copywriter, post-rationalized, not pre-conceptualized.

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It’s as if Lisson Gallery is offsetting some of their (possible) financial problems by having James Dyson set up in the next gallery to sell you vacuum cleaners. Hmmm, maybe that’s it–this art appears more “industrial design” than “Fine Art”. From now on, should we now dispense with that word “Fine”, keeping just “Art”? Or maybe it’s not even Art, but “Design”? But maybe it’s not even that, because it just seems like those design Knockoffs you see in the dollar stores.

And the superimposition of the work against the seriousness of the white gallery wall doesn’t help the legitimacy of the work at all’