From Duchamp to Demand: 10 Masterpieces That Show the Evolution of Conceptual Art

In a 1967 Artforum article titled “Paragraphs on Conceptual Art,” the artist Sol LeWitt gave a simple definition for what would soon become one of the crucial facets of contemporary art in the 20th century and beyond. “In conceptual art,” he writes, “the idea or concept is the most important aspect of the work….The idea becomes the machine that makes the […]

What Is Leonardo’s ‘Salvator Mundi’ Really Selling? Cracking the $100 Million da Vinci Code

Jesus saves, but the buyer of da Vinci’s ‘Salvator Mundi’ will spend—a lot. The signs all point one way: Christie’s upcoming sale of Leonardo da Vinci’s spooky Salvator Mundi is the latest and perhaps most convincing portent that we are living in the End Times. In the Bible, Christ and his apostles held their property in common. Now, this image […]

The Evolution of Art: Artworks That Advanced Our Understanding of the Medium, Part I

Today, art can be almost anything. But there was a time in the not-so-distant past when abstraction was inconceivable, and it was believed that art could only represent something that already existed in the real world. There was a time when an object couldn’t be considered art unless it showed evidence of the artist’s touch. And until […]

An Eye-Popping Mid-Century Apartment Filled With Pollocks, Klines, and de Koonings

If you had Ben Heller’s eye, you’d have picked 50 straight Derby winners, or signed 100 future Hall of Fame ballplayers when they were 17. “When I think of my old apartment on the Upper West Side,” says the tall, spry Heller, who is 91, “even I’m shocked.” In the mid-1950s, the talent he was […]

Who Are the Most Influential Artists of the Last Century? 26 Industry Leaders Weigh In

Which artist defined the last 100 years—and continues to reverberate in the work of artists today? In 2017, a century since Marcel Duchamp turned a readymade urinal into an artwork, we’ve wondered how to characterize the past 100 years in art, posing challenging questions to some of the industry’s brightest figures: What are this century’s most iconic works […]

WHEN WALTER HOPPS MET ANDY WARHOL AND FRANK STELLA

The innovative, iconoclastic curator Walter Hopps (1932-2005) was one of the most influential figures in mid-to-late-twentieth-century American art. He founded his first gallery in L.A. at the age of twenty-one and, at twenty-four, opened the Ferus Gallery with the artist Ed Kienholz, where they turned the spotlight on a new generation of West Coast artists. […]

Damien Hirst, Treasures from the Wreck of the Unbelievable, review: this spectacular failure could be the shipwreck of his career

After months of speculation, rumour, and stage-managed hype, Damien Hirst’s latest extravaganza is finally opening in Venice – and, my goodness, it’s enormous. With 190 works of art, displayed across 54,000 square feet of gallery space, Treasures from the Wreck of the Unbelievable, as the exhibition is called, is arranged across two venues: Palazzo Grassi, […]

Conceptual Art Movement and Examples

The Conceptual art movement is probably the most radical and the most controversial plane in modern and contemporary art. Some artists, experts and art historians even dismiss it as art. Conceptual art is based on the notion that the essence of art is an idea, or concept, and may exist distinct from and in the […]

10 Neo DADA Art Pieces that Influenced and Shaped the Groundbreaking Art Movement

Revisiting the irony of the original Dada movement, Neo-Dada was first popularized in the early 1960s. The label has been applied to a wide variety of artistic works, mostly including Junk art, use of found objects and the employment of banal activities and objects as instruments of social and aesthetic critique. The most popular names […]

A Whole Century Later, The Duchamp Fountain is Still Shaking up the Art World

Can One Make Works That Are Not “Works” of Art? This was a question asked by Duchamp in his notes from 1913, and remains being the essential question while considering the Richard Mutt Case. Exactly one hundred years ago, in 1917, the course of art history has been completely changed by a submission of a urinal […]

As Duchamp’s ‘Fountain’ Turns 100: 14 Iconic Artworks It Inspired

Discover the enduring legacy of the readymade in works by Manzoni, Koons, Hirst, Emin … Marcel Duchamp’s Fountain hardly needs an introduction. Celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, the work was originally submitted for display at the 1917 exhibition of the Society of Independent Artists in New York City. Famously rejected by the committee, Duchamp instead exhibited the work at Alfred […]

From Seminal Fluid to Sassy Scribbles: The “Non-Art” Works of Marcel Duchamp

Even after digesting this considerable amount of ostensibly transitory disclosure, Duchamp remains an unadulterated, irreverent enigma. While his readymades are a triumph of pure indifference over taste, admirers of Marcel Duchamp continue to be far from indifferent to this cryptic artist. By offering more than homage, Elena Filipovic’s The Apparently Marginal Activities of Marcel Duchamp, […]

Guggenheim’s Gold Toilet – a Mockery or High Art?

Often described as a provocateur, prankster and tragic poet of our times, Maurizio Cattelan has loudly announced his retirement from art in 2011. By installing an 18-karat solid gold toilet in the Guggenheim Museum in 2016, the artist has officially emerged from his self-imposed retirement, in style. Titled America, the ongoing project has taken up […]

The Ultimate Outline of the 20th Century Art

There is no doubt that the 20th century art was all about changing perspective. The artist’s way of seeing and therefore understanding things has been changing and continues to do so even in this day and age. The new, experimental approach to perspective was pursued both directly and implicitly. Painters and sculptors had abandoned linear […]

Talk – Collecting Contemporary Art, Audain Art Museum, Whistler, Canada

Laing Brown is an art collector who is interested in ideas. Brown, chair of the Audain Art Museum acquisitions committee and an external advisor to the acquisitions committee of the National Gallery of Canada, has just returned from Britain, where he went to check out Frieze London, where 160 of the world’s top commercial galleries […]

Clean, Well-Lighted Places: On Our Nostalgia for the Golden Age of Art Dealing

The notion that collectors sit atop the hierarchy of today’s art world is axiomatic. They build private museums and control the boards of traditional ones. Through their acquisitions, they determine the fates of artists, and often overshadow curators, historians, and critics—all those ink-stained intellectuals who used to play a larger role in determining art’s value. […]

Public Talk: Collecting Contemporary Art

“Without tradition, art is a flock of sheep without a shepherd. Without innovation, it is a corpse.” – Sir Winston Churchill Join Laing Brown, a noted art collector, Board Member and Chair of the Audain Art Museum Acquisitions Committee, for a public multi-media presentation where he will discuss his Top 10 Collecting Rules for contemporary […]

How Abstract Expressionism changed modern art

What did the artists associated with Abstract Expressionism do so differently? And how is their work still relevant today? As the first survey of Abstract Expressionism for nearly 60 years is staged in Britain, co-curator David Anfam answers key questions. 1. How was Abstract Expressionism different to what came before? Crucially Abstract Expressionism, or ‘Ab […]

Ai Weiwei’s Tree – NGC Collection

Ai Weiwei’s Tree (2009–10) stands a towering five metres in height, and spans the same distance at its upper reaches. A commanding yet enchanting presence in Gallery B105, Tree is flanked to the west by the late Sol LeWitt’s experiment with colour and asymmetry, Wall Drawing No. 623 Double asymmetrical pyramids with colour ink washes […]

In Search of the “Big Technique”: Alex Katz on Why Artists Should Stick to a Style in a Changing Art World

In this extensive interview excerpted from the revised and expanded edition of Phaidon’s monograph Alex Katz, the New York-based painter sits down with his longtime friend Robert Storr, the now-outgoing dean of the Yale School of Art, for a lively, winding discussion about the artist’s influences, concerns, and life history. You once said that a jerk is somebody […]