Opinion

Required Reading

A playfully simple and lovely idea from Aakash Nihalani (via flickr.com/aakashnihalani)

Links worth a look …

Reuters financial reporter unpacks mega-collector Adam Lindemann’s very limited take on collecting. Lindemann writes:

The notion that great art can be of no value, or that one should “buy what you like” even if it is worthless, is an opinion often held by those who have no background in art or willingness to learn and appreciate art in its full context.

Self promotion isn’t only for visual artists. Writers have been doing it — and thinking about it — forever. These are some gems from a fantastic essay in the New York Times:

“For artists, the great problem to solve is how to get oneself noticed,” Balzac …

In 440 B.C. or so, a first-time Greek author named Herodotus paid for his own book tour around the Aegean.

In the 12th century, the clergyman Gerald of Wales organized his own book party in Oxford, hoping to appeal to college audiences.

… the Bloomsbury set regularly posed for fashion shoots in British Vogue in the 1920s. The frumpy Virginia Woolf even went on a “Pretty Woman”-style shopping expedition at French couture houses in London with the magazine’s fashion editor in 1925.

But they got off easy compared with those invited to the “Funeral Supper” of the 18th-century French bon vivant Grimod de la Reynière, held to promote his opus “Reflections on Pleasure.” The guests’ curiosity turned to horror when they found themselves locked in a candlelit hall with a catafalque for a dining table, and were served an endless meal by black-robed waiters while Grimod insulted them as an audience watched from the balcony. When the diners were finally released at 7 a.m., they spread word that Grimod was mad — and his book quickly went through three ­printings.

In 1887, Guy de Maupassant sent up a hot-air balloon over the Seine with the name of his latest short story, “Le Horla,” painted on its side.

A story about Chinese artists who are not interested in the political, unless by political you mean the market.

Michael Guidetti’s “Untitled (Standards)” (2009) is a beautifully subtle 3-hour animated projection onto a watercolor on canvas work.

From The Creators Project:

Greek painter and multimedia artist Miltos Manetas believes “websites are today’s most radical and important art objects,” as he explains in-depth in the online essay, “Websites Are The Art Of Our Times”.

Kottke finds a gem from 1988 … a video produced by New York’s MTA to promote the notion that graffiti is a crime.

The Art History Newsletter blog asks if this scene from Haiti was an embarrassment for photojournalists.

And, in case you missed it, Superman has renounced his American citizenship. He is now a citizen of the world.

Required Reading is published every Sunday morning at 7am-ish 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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