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Conceptual Art

Conceptual Art
Theory, Myth, and Practice


Frances Colpitt, Alex Aberro, Melanie Mariño, Ann Stephen, James Meyer, Alison Green, Ken Allan, Richard J. Williams, Robert Hobbs, Briony Fer, Edward A. Shanken, Johanna Drucker, Blake Stimson, John Roberts, Chris Gilbert, Adrian Piper
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  • Date Published: February 2004
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521530873

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About the Authors
  • Conceptual art was a loose collection of related practices that emerged worldwide during the 1960s and 1970s. It continues to be relevant to contemporary art and remains a lively topic of debate. The most striking features of conceptual art are its de-emphasis on the importance of the art object and its understanding of the role of language in shaping our knowledge of the world and our conception of art. This collection of essays deals with the issues that animated Conceptual art in the anglophone world. It offers readers a wealth of research on the earliest international exhibitions of Conceptual art, interpretation of some of its most important practitioners, and a consideration of the relationship between conceptual art and the intellectual and social context of the 1960s and 1970s. Of special note are the contributions focusing on the explicitly social and political aspirations of this influential avant-garde artistic practice.

    • Historical and interpretive research by younger scholars on Conceptual art
    • Special focus on the social dimensions of Anglo-American art
    • Excellent range of illustrative material, some appearing for the first time since the 1960s and 1970s
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    Reviews & endorsements

    '… these contributions open up a welcome historiography of this period.' Art Monthly

    'This detailed anthology is an expert recalibration of a theme thinly offered by recent publications. This anthology shows that the legacy of conceptual art remains a transfiguring subject for critics and, if so desired, becomes a profound interrogation for curators. Make it your guide.' Journal of Visual Culture

    '… this is an incisive and scholarly contribution to the extant literature which … may well become a benchmark for serious study of the subject area.' Art History

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    Product details

    • Date Published: February 2004
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521530873
    • length: 380 pages
    • dimensions: 255 x 179 x 23 mm
    • weight: 0.8kg
    • contains: 69 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction: 'An Invisible College in an Anglo-American World'
    Part I. Artists, Object, Spectator:
    1. The formalist connection and originary myths of Conceptual art Frances Colpitt
    2. Content, context and conceptual art: Dan Graham's Schema Alex Aberro
    3. 'Almost not photography' Melanie Mariño
    4. Soft talk/soft tape: the early collaborations of Ian Burn and Mel Ramsden Ann Stephen
    Part II. Display:
    5. The second degree: working drawings and other visible things on paper not necessarily meant to be viewed as art James Meyer
    6. When Attitudes become Form and the contest over Conceptual art's history Alison Green
    7. Understanding Information Ken Allan
    8. 'The rotting sack of humanism': Robert Morris and authorship Richard J. Williams
    Part III. Recoding Information, Knowledge, and Technology:
    9. Affluence, taste and the brokering of knowledge: notes on the social context of early conceptual art Robert Hobbs
    10. Hanne Darboven: seriality and the time of solitude Briony Fer
    11. Art in the information age: technology and Conceptual art Edward A. Shanken
    12. The crux of conceptualism: Conceptual art, the Idea of idea and the information paradigm Johanna Drucker
    Part IV. The Limit of the Social:
    13. Conceptual work and conceptual waste Blake Stimson
    14. Conceptual art and imageless truth John Roberts
    15. New York discusses its social relations in 'The lumpen Headache' Chris Gilbert
    16. Ian Burn's conceptualism Adrian Piper.

  • Editor

    Michael Corris, Sheffield Hallam University
    Michael Corris has exhibited in galleries and museums internationally since 1972 and is represented in public and private collections in North America and Europe. His writings on art and art theory have been published widely: in artist-run publications (Art-Language, The Fox, and Red-Herring), scholarly journals (Word and Image, Art Journal, and Art History), and the international art press (Artforum, Art+Text, and Art Monthly, among others). Currently, Dr Corris is the editor for a new series of monographs on art since the 1980s (forthcoming 2013), continues to work with colleagues on the editorial board of Transmission Annual (which he co-founded in 2008 with Jaspar Joseph-Lester and Sharon Kivland), and in 2014 will assume the post of book reviews editor for the College Art Association's contemporary art publication, Art Journal.


    Frances Colpitt, Alex Aberro, Melanie Mariño, Ann Stephen, James Meyer, Alison Green, Ken Allan, Richard J. Williams, Robert Hobbs, Briony Fer, Edward A. Shanken, Johanna Drucker, Blake Stimson, John Roberts, Chris Gilbert, Adrian Piper

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