Artworld Prestige: Arguing Cultural Value by Timothy Van LaarArtworld Prestige: Arguing Cultural Value by Timothy Van Laar

Artworld Prestige: Arguing Cultural Value

byTimothy Van Laar, Leonard Diepeveen

Hardcover | January 2, 2013

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Artworld Prestige examines the ways in which cultural arguments about value develop: the processes by which some practices, artists, and media in the artworld win and others lose. Timothy Van Laar and Leonard Diepeveen argue that the concept of prestige, although uncomfortable and consistentlyoverlooked, is an essential model for understanding artworld values, as important as the more common models centered on economics or power. Prestige shapes the forms of attention art is given, as well as the processes by which some affects dominate art discourse and others fall away. But prestigedoes its work silently, and its principles are used unself-consciously. People effortlessly display the protocols of being an insider.A form of socially constructed agreement, prestige shapes what we see, and does so with great power. Prestige is inescapable, a version of Althusserian ideology or Foucauldian power that both constrains and enables. It is also flexible, defining the seriousness of artists as diverse as Dan Petermanand Marlene Dumas, Gerhard Richter and Takashi Murakami, Elizabeth Peyton and Joseph Kosuth, Howard Finster and Frank Gallo. Cultural argument about value in art is a matter of deference and conferral, performed through thousands of tiny acts of estimation that suggest one cultural form is lessrelevant, worthy of attention than another; acts that instinctively grant more attention to reviews in Artforum over Artnews; to the Tate Modern over the Hirshhorn; to anxiety over pleasure; to Duchamp over Matisse; to conceptual art over abstract painting, and abstract painting over figurepainting; to painting over ceramics, and video over painting.In order to argue candidly about cultural value, the artworld needs to understand the subtleties of prestige, of such things as what it means to be "serious." Not an expose but an explanation, Artworld Prestige offers such an understanding
Timothy Van Laar is Professor of Art at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Leonard Diepeveen is Professor of English at Dalhousie University.
Title:Artworld Prestige: Arguing Cultural ValueFormat:HardcoverDimensions:224 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 0.98 inPublished:January 2, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199913986

ISBN - 13:9780199913985


Table of Contents

Preface1. When Good Art Goes Bad: A Theory of Prestige2. Eclectic Practices: Abstraction, Figuration, and Pluralism3. Cultural Obituaries and the Status of Painting4. Signs of PleasureConclusionSelf-consciousness and AuthenticityWorks Cited