Clippings swept from the salon floor, #2

New term alert: China fatigue. The Telegraph’s Art sales: Rampant market, rising fatigue used the phrase “China Fatigue” in two quite different ways: 1) The Chinese churning out of tired but highly saleable work, e.g. “Tate’s Simon Groom believes that the rampant market may have produced what he calls ‘China fatigue,’ encouraging artists to make saleable pastiches rather than ‘genuinely good, creatively interesting art’. 2) The seemingly inevitable state when the current high demand for Chinese ConArt falters, e.g. “Over the next 12 days, contemporary Chinese art will be auctioned in Paris, London and Hong Kong. No one doubts that the speculation will continue, but some will be watching out for signs of China fatigue.” I’d propose another, synthetic, definition: 3) The market condition arising when demand for Chinese ConArt finally flags, because people tire of endlessly seeing similar pieces.

Chris Burden, Shoot, recreated by  Eva and Franco Mattes Tech Gone Wrong: “Synthetic Performances,” in which classical pieces of performance art – Joseph Beuys’ “7000 Oaks,Valie Export’s “Tapp und Tastkino,” Vito Acconci’s “Seedbed,” Chris Burden’s “Shoot” – are recreated in Second Life, the newest machinima platform. An odd project made even odder by the gym-bot physical culture in Second Life – Burden and Acconci look like buffed-out surfer dudes and Export is working a Daisy Duke/Pris look. (See also at Art Review Blog, via Ed_W.)

Those who can’t make, sell? While there are some New York dealers who are also active artists (Guild & Greyshkul ‘s three founders – Sara Van Der Beek, Johannes Van Der Beek, Anya Kielar – all had shows at other very solid galleries in the last year), apparently Chelsea and LA are larded with artiste manqué dealers. The Kantor/Feuer Window gallery (literally a window on 10th avenue, open 24/7) will be featuring the work of 20-plus such dealers starting today. Those include heavy-hitters and hot young names such as Roland Augustine, John Cheim, Zach Feuer, David Kordansky, Jeff Poe and Becky Smith. Points to them for exhibiting their work, given the truckload of snippy comments it’s sure to earn them among anti-market aesthetes.

Critical lashings: From the Times of London’s Tate’s all fun of the fair, but is it art, ask critics, which criticized the Tate’s following Carsten Holler’s five-story slides by “a Victorian carousel garlanded with toffee apples,” created by Brazilian artist Marepe: “David Lee, editor of the art magazine The Jackdaw, was not convinced: ‘What the Tate has proved beyond reasonable doubt is that if you turn art galleries into amusement arcades you will get a lot of people through the door.‘”

Critical whiplash: From Roberta Smith’s stiletto (the knife, not the shoe) lede in the lead piece of Friday’s New York Times art-reviews roundup: “Kristin Baker’s paintings strike the eye with a harsh and dazzling newness. But the eye adjusts and eventually is bored, despite the surfeit of thought, skill and art-historical aside.

2 thoughts on “Clippings swept from the salon floor, #2”

  1. Regarding China fatigue, have you seen the number and nature of the full-page ads from Chinese galleries in the April 2007 issue of Artforum. I was surprised by how many there are, seemingly all of a sudden, but even more surprised by their tone. Playful, youthful, self-confident…they remind me of a young art market located the other side of the East River circa 1999…same energy, same attitude, but a lot (and clearly a LOT) less money.

  2. Confidence, there is no shortage of here. Am in the middle of a week of gallery visits in Shanghai. They are convinced it is their time and almost self-righteously so. But with enough good humour to make it fun.

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