Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Silliman on Goldsworthy

Ron Silliman's post today is about Rivers and Tides, a documentary on the British earthworks artist Andy Goldsworthy. I've fallen asleep during the film twice now, once when we rented it and once when it played on the Documentary Channel, but I think I've seen enough to say I share Silliman's frustration with Goldsworthy, though I tend to cast mine in different terms. What bothers me about Goldsworthy's work (or I guess, judging by my reaction to the film, what I find boring about it) is that it feels as though it earnestly appeals to a nostalgic and preconceived sense of beauty rather than, assuming that beauty is the work's aim, attempting to discover a contemporary one. In fact, I'm tempted to say that as far as I'm concerned, if there's one marker of bad art (and I mean art in the general sense), it's this orientation to beauty.

I'm a big fan of ugliness myself.

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