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Donald Kuspit argues here that art is over because it has lost its aesthetic import. Art has been replaced by "postart," a term invented by Alan Kaprow, as a new visual category that elevates the banal over the enigmatic, the scatological over the sacred, cleverness over creativity. Tracing the demise of aesthetic experience to the works and theory of Marcel Duchamp and Barnett Newman, Kuspit argues that devaluation is inseparable from the entropic character of modern art, and that anti-aesthetic postmodern art is in its final state. In contrast to modern art, which expressed the universal human unconscious, postmodern art degenerates into an expression of narrow ideological interests. In reaction to the emptiness and stagnancy of postart, Kuspit signals the aesthetic and human future that lies with the old masters. The End of Art points the way to the future for the visual arts. Donald Kuspit is Professor of Art History at SUNY Stony Brook. A winner of the Frank Jewett Mather Award for Distinction in Art Criticism, Professor Kuspit is a Contributing Editor at Artforum, Sculpture and New Art Examiner. His most recent book is The Cult of the Avant-Garde (Cambridge, 1994).Read more
- Argues that art has been replaced by postart
- Critiques the devaluation of the aesthetic
- Argues that there are New Old Masters on the horizon
Reviews & endorsements
"This is an excellent book for understanding the post-modern art scene and how the next generation of visual artists might proceed."
-Tampa TribuneSee more reviews
"Kuspit's view is persuasive...The End of Art didn't make my mind up for me; rather, it opened up room for debate with artist friends and fellow gallery hoppers about the definition of art, whether it can be judged according to a universal standard and where it's going. It made me more aware of my powers of perception and my power as a perceiver, and encouraged me to seek out art that pleases me, for whatever reason."
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- Date Published: February 2005
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9780521540162
- length: 226 pages
- dimensions: 226 x 150 x 15 mm
- weight: 0.32kg
- contains: 39 b/w illus.
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
1. The changing of the art guard
2. The aesthetic maligned: Duchamp and Newman
3. Seminal entropy: the paradox of modern art
4. The decline of the cult of the unconscious: running on empty
5. Mirror, mirror of the worldly wall, why is art no longer the truest religion of all?: the god that lost faith in itself
Postscript. Abandoning and rebuilding the studio.
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