Slide Show - Images (mostly) from The Illustrated History of Painting


Friday, March 11, 2016

Macher & Machen The 2016 Walters Prize Selection

Thread contribution (with some editing for out-of-context-legibility) to Jim and Mary Barr's Over the net and on the Table FB Page:

Without at all questioning the quality and suitability of art and artists, chosen for this year's Walters finalists, I would submit that the largest elephant in the Walters room is the apparent exclusion of painting and painters from consideration. 

While there have been, in the past, exceptions to this perpetually evident omission ... those, for the most part token, painters included in the finalist-and-winners mix would be exceptions to the rule. 

Given that painting is the statistically largest category of visual art practice in any country, and given it thrives, innovates and (yes) dominates multiple artworld sectors - despite its many published obituaries - its exclusion by successive Walters juries is an embarrassingly self-conscious and myopic exercise of ideological discrimination. 

The supposed conflict of ( makher / מאַכער ) interest you (Over the Net) highlight with your investigative speculations is, in my experience, standard operating procedure in the larger artworld... and here, on these professionally inbred islands, an all but unavoidable fact. 

'Insider-trading' is the mother's milk of international, national, and regional artworld-curation and adjudication. And an indispensable promotion-rung on the arts-administration career-ladder. 

I would guess that what I've written here will be seen (if at all) as either partisan, sour/grapes, and/or reactionary waffle. What else is new?