A graphic posted on the action’s tumblelog (via artistsspaceoccupation.tumblr.com)

Leave it to the art world to make everything about them, a tendency that has become crystal clear over the past few weeks since the Occupy Wall Street movement began last month.

First the race of anonymous Twitter handles, then it was tilting at windmills  museums, now some artists temporarily occupied Artist’s Space (and, of course, there was an accompanying tumblelog).

As Bucky Turco at Animal New York writes, people are wondering:

… why a ‘radical’ artist would lead a coup against a radical art space.

I have no explanation.


There’s also some confusion about the whole thing in Facebook’s Occupennial group and one person writes:

… for the record OWS didn’t ‘take’ Artists Space, it was invited, even treated to free pizza and beer.

If you want to occupy something people, how about a blue chip gallery or an auction house? Maybe a politician’s office who is infamous for not supporting the arts or cutting arts funding?

I’m not the only one confused, Andrew Russeth is too, so is Steve Kaplan and Paddy Johnson seems just as befuddled, though I think Turco says it best:

Perhaps Georgia Sangri and her merry band of self-described anarchists should start anew by occupying the Anthony Reynolds Gallery, a posh art space in London that still sells her work.

 Ouch. Raise your hand if you’re feeling art occupation fatigue? Or are you eagerly anticipating MTV’s reality tv show, True Life: I’m  Occupying Wall Street?

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Hrag Vartanian

Hrag Vartanian is editor-in-chief and co-founder of Hyperallergic. You can follow him at @hragv.

3 replies on “Occupying Art Things Has Officially Jumped the Shark”

  1. Well, its easier and softer on the career prospects than standing against any real old-style art institutions.

  2. Same shit different day, The Living Installation is joining up with the official Wall-street team to ACTUALLY OCCUPY SOMETHING with a strong message, beat us to it…please…STEP UP ART PEOPLE!

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