Why the Upper East Side Is the Best Place to See Art in New York

Artspace Article Published: April 3, 2016: Stretched out alongside the east flank of Central Park like a satisfied cat lying in the sun, the Upper East Side—longtime home to tycoons and celebrities—is still the most luxe neighborhood in New York City, where foreign billionaires plant their money in $100 million manses and ridiculous trend stories […]

Why the ‘Uber effect’ is proving elusive for online platforms

Barely a month goes by without the launch of an online initiative that aims to disrupt the art market and bring the “Uber and Airbnb effect” to art transactions. But witness the crowds pacing the aisles at a big-league art fair, or spilling out of the salesrooms during the evening auctions, and the impact of […]

MoMA Curator Laura Hoptman on How to Tell a Good Painting From a “Bogus” Painting

When the influential Museum of Modern Art curator Laura Hoptman claims that she’s “a painting person,” it’s no joke. A veteran organizer of cutting-edge exhibitions, she built her career in part through her insistence on championing the medium, even—or perhaps especially—through its perennial periods of unpopularity and critical disdain. This has earned her both accolades and […]

What Was Suprematism? A Brief History of the Russian Idealists Who Created Abstraction as We Know It

At an exhibition entitled “0.10” (“Zero Ten”) in St Petersburg in 1915, Black Square (completed in 1913), the first Suprematist work by Kazimir Malevich (1878–1935), hung in the corner of the room, the traditional setting for an icon in an Orthodox Russian home. The artwork was a square canvas painted black. Malevich claimed in 1927 […]

Curator Hans Ulrich Obrist on What Makes Painting an “Urgent” Medium Today

Painting has always served as a kind of laboratory for innovative ways of looking at the world, from the perspectival experiments of Alberti all the way to Impressionism, Cubism, Surrealism, abstraction,Minimalism, et cetera. Painters often saw themselves as an advance guard, pushing a kind of investigation forward in new terrain. Here, you’ve mentioned how in […]

10 Extraordinary Sculptures That Tackle Life in the 21st Century

Sculpture has gone through a plethora of transformations in the modern era, from Rodin’s emotionally charged, erotic figures in the 1880s, to Judd’s geometric, stoic forms of the 1960s, to the current anything-goes approach of contemporary sculptors. Naturally, the best (or at least best-remembered) artists use their work to respond to the pressing political and […]

More than Melting Clocks: 10 Surrealist Masterpieces You Need to Know

Among radical 20th century art movements (of which there are more than a few), Surrealism is one of the few that’s been able to establish a hold on the popular as well as avant-garde imaginary, in no small part due to the outlandish public persona of its self-proclaimed ringleader Salvador Dalí. What’s sometimes forgotten, however, […]

What Was Surrealism? Read the Real Story Behind the Enigmatic Art Movement

Despite its status as one of the most widely cited and recognizable art movements to come out of the early 20th century,Surrealism remains (perhaps appropriately) something of an enigma to contemporary art viewers. In some ways, it’s simply too strange—the paintings, sculptures, and writing that the loosely defined philosophy has produced appear to have little […]

What Was Abstract Expressionism? A Paint-Splattered Primer on America’s First Major Art Movement

You don’t need to be an art insider to hear the term “Abstract Expressionists” used to describe the inspiration behind all manner of contemporary painting, but what was the original movement all about? Hint: it’s more than just Jackson Pollock drinking and tossing paint on a canvas. In this brief essay from Phaidon’s Art in Time: […]

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 […]

What Was Fluxus? A Brief Guide to the Irreverent, Groundbreaking Art Movement

Fluxus was a loose confederation of international artists in the 1960s working in performance, painting, sculpture, poetry, experimental music, and even correspondence art (art sent through the postal service). It was often, though not exclusively, political in tone. Fluxus works shared similarities with the “Happenings” of Allan Kaprow, particularly in the way they blurred distinctions […]

Architect Annabelle Selldorf on Why Mega-Galleries Are Transforming Into Mini-Museums

If you are even a casual appreciator of art in New York, the chances are that you have stepped into one of Annabelle Selldorf’s spaces, and been entranced. Perhaps the most coveted architect among the minimalistically inclined art elite, Selldorf has designed a broad spectrum of the city’s art sites, from theNeue Galerie uptown, steeped […]

Can an Art Fair Be a Political Act? Roman Dealer Paola Capata on Making Granpalazzo the World’s Most “Italian” Fair

Located in the 16th-century Palazzo Rospigliosi in the rustic country village of Zagarolo, a short drive outside of Rome,  Granpalazzo is unlike any art fair you’ve seen before. Instead of traditional booths, there are curated presentations of individual artists, elegantly spaced throughout the historic building. The walls are covered with historic frescos, the conversation is […]

8 New Classics of 21st-Century Photography You Need to Know Now

Since its inception in the early 1800s, photography has been the site of immense change as it evolved from a scientific challenge to a world-shaking mass medium over the past 200 years. The digital revolution of the new millennium has brought on both never-before-seen capabilities and a new ubiquity of the photographed image, developments artists […]

7 Video Art Masterpieces You Need to Know Now

Video art has been with us for nearly half a century, a fertile ground for artists to experiment with new modes of aesthetic experience. As media culture expanded to nearly every corner of our society over the course of the 20th century, artists in turn refined and emboldened their approaches to the medium. The following […]

Ellsworth Kelly on His Singular Career, and the “Great Joy” of His Art – Video

A towering figure of the postwar era, Ellsworth Kelly charted a singular and often solitary artistic path. He ventured to Europe twice—first as a camoufleur for the Ghost Army during World War II, then as a questing painter on the G.I. Bill—and brought back a bright and lively new style of American painting, seductive in […]

21st-Century Painting You Need to Know Now

It seems like only yesterday that we were anxiously anticipating the shift into a new millennium, with all the hopes and fears that come with the changing times. With 2016 fast approaching, now is the perfect time to look back on the highlights of the past 15 years of painting to see how far we’ve […]

9 Wacky and Wonderful Found-Object Sculptures From Across Art History

When Marcel Duchamp made his “Fountain” by elevating a men’s room fixture to a plinth in a gallery, he encouraged artists to consider the selection of non-art goods as part of the creative act. The gesture may not look as radical a century on, but it continues to inspire; today, you might walk into a […]

In Search of Lost Time: How the Art World Dispensed With Chronology in 2015 (and Why 2016 Will Be the Year of the “Historical-Contemporary”)

Although it may seem strange to devote a year-end roundup to the subject of atemporality, 2015 found the art world in a state of chronological confusion. The year began, so to speak, in December of 2014 when the Museum of Modern Art opened “The Forever Now: Contemporary Painting in an Atemporal World,” which ran through […]