Reactor

Required Reading

by Hrag Vartanian on January 16, 2011

We start things off “10 links or less” with a visually stunning new music video that blends together design from the last forty years into a crack-ed out — literally — visual feast featuring 1970s psychedelia with 2000s O Design. I present The Left Rights‘s “I’m on Crack” (also posted above).

Souren Melikian‘s lede for his latest article in New York Times is a zinger, “Perhaps the history of modern art should be rewritten from scratch.” He goes on to discuss the implications of the work of Italian figural artists and what they tell us about the history of modern art.

Glenn Lowry speaks to Art+Auction magazine about why MoMA is going to expand … again. The newest growth spurt will reportedly add 30% more space to the museum, but what that exactly means for the display of art I’m not sure, since I’m sure the number includes those massive hallways, passageways, and traffic areas.

London’s Blueprint Magazine picks the best 10 British buildings of the 21st C. and the list is museum heavy (3 out of 10) — the Tate Modern, Oxford’s Ashmolean Museum and the Nottingham Contemporary.

If you haven’t already, I suggest reading the Peter Saul interview in the Dec/Jan 2011 Brooklyn Rail with Irving Sandler and Phong Bui. It offers some insight into a very individualistic artist who has for decaded never fit into any dominate schools. I really like these sentences:

It simply came to me as an idea and, never having been a graduate student, I simply accepted all my ideas as they came to me. I didn’t ask if it was good or in accord with somebody else’s ideas; I just started doing it.

Related to the Saul interview and from the archives of the UTNE Reader (May/June 1998) is William Upski Winsatt’s “How I Got My DIY Degree…” It’s something you may want to read periodically to inspire you to push yourself.

British artist Grayson Perry talks to Aesthetica Magazine in a short audio podcast about contemporary art “being a bit shouty sometimes” and the fact that “people now go to art galleries thinking they will shocked or challenged in some way, and I think that’s a shame … of course challenge and shock and surprise are part of the deal but it has become the headline … ”

And finally, a nugget for the art history geeks out there. In Apollo Magazine, we read Anne Hedeman’s “Reading the Painted Page,” which uses the current illuminated manuscript at the Getty Museum to explore how medieval texts were interconnected. She writes:

This discussion of illuminated manuscripts from Charles V’s library shows how pictures blurred boundaries between texts that modern scholars would class in different literary genres and might not view as informing one another.

And there’s this obsessive quality about Charles V you probably didn’t know:

Charles V’s Grandes chroniques was one of his prized possessions. Not only did he sign it in a colophon at the end of its first volume, but he also had its history of France updated twice during the last five years of his life. Newly written and illuminated historical texts were included in order to make this history of the French kings an especially authoritative historical record for his descendants.

Required Reading is published every Sunday morning at 7am EST, and it is comprised of a short list of art-related links (10 or less) to long-form articles, videos, blog posts or photo essays worth a second look.

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