Art Writing, not Fart Writing.
January 6, 2012 4:16 PM Subscribe
I'd like examples of great down-to-earth art writing.
posted by Sara C. to media & arts (23 answers total) 43 users marked this as a favorite
I love (visual) art. I love reading nonfiction. Help me combine the two in a way that isn't grating and pretentious.
I really like the idea of reading - and writing - about both contemporary art and art history. But so much writing on the subject is... douchey. Or overly academic, obfuscating, or simply dull.
Does anyone have recommendations?
Writing/scholarship wise, I adore just about everything Simon Schama has ever done, and remember enjoying Michelangelo and the Pope's Ceiling as well as Alexandra Lapierre's novel about Artemisia Gentileschi several years ago (though right now I'm looking more for non-fiction). I'm getting more into writing on music and film.
Some art loves: Caravaggio, Bernini, Vermeer, Rothko, Basquiat, Cy Twombly, Richard Serra (OK I like minimalism), Gaugin, Duchamp, Kate Beaton, Louise Bourgeois, probably others I'm not thinking about at the moment.
Outside of art/art-history subject areas, I already read lots of nonfiction about the humanities. So theoretically this is something I should like. I used to be part of a contemporary art collective in New York and am more arts literate than the average bear, but I'm not an insider by any means. Ironically, this probably is why I set the bar so high. I'm intimately familiar with all the ways the art world can be full of pretentious assholes.
I'm particularly interested in shorter forms like essays, blogs, or reporting/interviews/reviews, but books are also fine. I'd be open to biographies of artists. Humor or anything that doesn't take itself super-seriously would be appreciated. High and low culture are both fine. I'm not interested in coverage of the art market. The most important thing is that the writing itself should be compelling.