Thursday, December 10, 2009

Top 10 Art Developments of the Decade out in NOW

December 2009 is the mini-era of the decade list genre in all media right now, it seems. Rolling Stone just released their double-naught cover, seen above, and, for the less sincerely excited, my National Post colleagues have been doing a smileworthy sarcastic version in recent print editions of the Saturday arts section.

NOW's decade-list issue is out today, complete with a "Top 10 Art Developments of the Decade" section. I contributed to this list along with my colleagues Fran Schechter and David Jager. Here's the rundown:

1. Photography in flux
2. Queen West art boom
3. Post-conceptualism
4. Art festivals go big
6. Forever young
7. Art market bubble and crash
8. Galleries seize their space
9. Exhibition Transport Services cut
10. Rising museum admission fees

To read the reasoning and details, do hop on over to the article.

(On the art front, of course, we've already had some debate on this blog about the Star's decade-best art picks, which we should actually continue with the better-but-still-shockingly-white'n'male (TM) and art best-of lists. But I'll leave that for another post.)

Image of Chip Kidd's Rolling Stone cover from their website


pixo said...

"Development" is nice. I am hoping for "Revolution", something truly ground breaking ... is there any?

Leah Sandals said...

Hm, don't know if I believe the revolution is possible, Pixo, at least in art. I think it would be an amazing revolution to get Harper to sign on to fight climate change. But in art... such a term is hard to apply these days, I think. Maybe the main revolution that I'd like to see is in access to art, be it in arts education, or in access to museums. To revolutionize arts access to a more public-library model would be a huge shift, at least in my mind. But that's pretty unlikely, and sometimes "developments" are all we can hope for, let alone track.

pixo said...

Every time I come across Picasso's Les Demoiselles d'Avignon, in a book, on a web site, or in TV documentary ... it was being described as something truly revolutionary, something that changed how artists look at things ... it was painted in 1907, a hundred years ago. I am hoping for another Les Demoiselles d'Avignon in this decade to help kick start art making for the next 100 years.

About art access, I love art, especially paintings, and I cannot remember when I last went to the AGO, or the ROM. I have not been to these places since they completed their much hyped renovation. There is just nothing exciting, or interesting, to see. The King Tut thing is just sad.

I actually find it more rewarding to just surf the web to see what interesting things have been posted as digital images in cyberspace.

Here is an idea for improving art access. Put up a big show at the AGO with works done by the 10 finalists for the Royal Bank Canadian Painting Competition. Make a documentary on the judges as they went through their debate in choosing the winner. Let the judges tell the public why these finalists are good, and why the winner is the winner. Interview the young artists. Market the event (with the same force that AGO has put behind King Tut), make the event exciting, make Canadian paintings cool.

Leah Sandals said...

Hey Pixo,

An interesting idea on the art marketing front you got there... I think the UK does have a similar type of reality TV show about the Turner Prize winners, could be a great idea to branch out in that way here too--whether it's for the RBC, the Sobey, Grange prize or what have you.

I think the idea of revolution is something that has been encouraged in part by those selfsame art history books you mention. I guess my suspicion is that if we were there, we might find many potentially revolutionary things happening, or many small developments leading to the "big, revolutionary" work we all know about today.

This is why I am still working on a time travel machine to find out for sure. Until then, I retain my skepticism about the idea of single-moment revolutions in art or other realms.

Leah Sandals said...

Hopefully the absurd nature of my time travel machine statement came through there!