Friday, October 21, 2022

SoiL Thornton at Kunstverein Bielefeld


8 years ago CAWD noted that Darren's Bader's floor strewn with "regular objects" might be more interesting than art:

It would be more interesting to talk about many of these objects than it would most paintings in galleries today. Some of these objects are miraculous, a lot of the world is; who needs a painting, or worse, art.

It was true. And Bader was suicide bomb to the categorical dam of art, release the world into the gallery. Art had no defense.

[because] if we're going to take seriously the idea of [Carl Andre's] dead fire bricks arranged gravenly on floors, or [Michael Craig-Martin's] water become tree, then too so we must accept its ideological twin: shrimp tossed in a foosball table or muffins arranged. To argue one way or the other the importance of bricks/floor vs shrimp/game is to already enter into Bader's standoff, and lose to the man brilliantly willing to lose everything to win.

Like lucky quarters undifferentiated, Bader was willing to risk losing art into pile of ordinary objects it could barely be distinguished from - were it not the crowning halo of art accreditation, usually the oxymoron, certificate of authenticity. The merger of art and life was protected by legal documents. An unspoken sore point that Bader salted. Life was more interesting than art, and we defended art from it with notarized paper and a retrograde return to painting's definitive art-ness. 

Thornton OTOH seems to understand Bader's take - life's objects are more interesting than art's. But without wanting to suicide the category of art - and most importantly keeping art alive without necessarily a rebooting past genres. Everything here is neither sculpture nor readymade nor painting. It's like the world but also not the world at all. 

See too: Darren Bader