Sunday, January 07, 2007

odd how people get here - Conceptualism and Neo-Conceptualism

From the introduction to Conceptualism at Saatchi:

Put simply, conceptual art is based upon the idea an object or act represents, rather than the appearance, of the art object itself. The idea fuels the process of production, but the resulting physical object is viewed more as documentation of the idea. By this definition, the purpose of the artwork is to engage the viewers' mind rather than their eye. However, it is difficult to accept this definition because when an object, photograph, or installation exists in the gallery or museum context our natural tendency is to evaluate it for its physical appearance and aesthetic value.
From the introduction to Neo-Conceptualism at Saatchi:
"Conceptual art is based on the idea an object or act represents, rather than the appearance of the art object itself. The purpose of the artwork is to engage the viewer's mind rather than their eyes. Conceptual art is a non-object, non-object-making, and non-art aesthetic modality. Exhibits, installations, and events often deal with re-definitions of art, language, and ideas." These ideas from the introduction to conceptual art in Unit 12 all apply to neo-conceptual art.
Ok, this is a snark-free post.
But these examples have a common theme that holds them together - the intellectual search for meanings. This highly intellectualized approach to art is the major characteristic of neo-conceptualism, and a very strong connection to earlier conceptual art.
That intellect searching for meaning right up there, is a crystallized, diamond-hard example of the western ego. Saatchi has nice pages though. Actually I rather like that they have Punk Rock and Rap/Hip-Hop right in there with this stuff. More as I keep reading. (God, I should read more about art.)

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