Art Writing in Crisis

Edited by Brad Haylock, Megan Patty

Design by Brad Haylock


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Fires burn around the world. Systemic discrimination persists, precarity is increasing, and the modern democratic project faces challenges from all sides. Art writing helps us to understand art which in turn helps us to understand such crises. But art writing itself is in crisis. Newspapers and magazines offer fewer channels than ever for independent art criticism, persistent institutional biases exclude the positions of many, and a proliferation of platforms presents opportunities and challenges in equal measure.

Contemporary Art
This volume presents contributions from a broad range of authors who address the social and political dimensions of art and art writing in the contemporary context, and the ways in which new writing and publishing practices promote critical engagement among readerships as never before.
“Is there art without writing? Can writing be art? Is art writing a distinct discursive genre? How is it different from the writing of art history and criticism? Why do artists write? Does art writing have a different valence now than it did before Black Lives Matter, before the pandemic? How are the models, mediums, and meanings of art writing in the digital age different than they were in Vasari’s time? This book is not an answer but a provocation — a challenging guide to the state of the art of art writing in a continuous moment of crisis.”
— Roger Conover, editor of the MIT Press Writing Art series.
“This book is a timely compilation of texts that expose the conditions of art writing and publishing, and propose collectivity, diversity, and solidarity. In a time of global crisis, art writing repositions itself as an urgent orator for the major and minor issues.”
— Eleanor Vonne Brown, independent publisher.
288 pages
Paperback, 12.5x21 cm
Sternberg Press, 1st edition 2021
ISBN 9783956795855