From the moment of his first exhibits in Los Angeles and New York in 1991, Matthew Barney was catapulted into art world fame and cult status.
The very idea of arts exaltedness led ambitious artists to aspire to a public importance, at some odds with their actual position, as producers for the luxury trade.
I remember driving on the New Jersey Turnpike arguing with Phong Bui about who made the first abstract painting. I said that Kandinsky had gradually camouflaged his imagery and made abstractions by 1911. Phong said Kupka made completely abstract paintings in 1909 and that
I write fiction, poetry and essays, generally thats what they would be called, and then I organize shows when Im asked. I am the publisher/editor of a small press,
Its funny how memory works. Selective memory. What one chooses to remember. Forget.
In traveling around to various panels and symposia where contemporary issues in art or in visual representation, as the case might be are given a forum, I am struck by the manner in which citadels are verbally constructed over and over again in order to fend off the notion of ambiguity in art.