TLDNR I

Talent updated the image of the artist from that of modern art’s tortured genius to, instead, a more complex portrayal of a willing participant in the entertainment industry. The piece was instrumental in modernizing the art context for the Information Age. Visual artists such as Degas and Picasso had long depicted musicians, harlequins, and actors using fine art media, and the Pop artists had introduced commercial production techniques such as silkscreen to create images taken from popular culture, but Talent collapsed the distance at which visual artists had previously held entertainment culture.” [David Robbins On Talent]

“… it’s the more marginal developments that start to bug you. And one of the least appealing, and, yet, for me, most significant trends of 2014 was the rise of the noisy, empty celebration of the artist-as-ego. Or maybe that should be ego-as-artist. I’m not sure. Of course, the art world has always been full of pretty massive egos, so what’s new, right? Yet 2014 seemed to be the year in which the obsession with the most narcissistic expression of the individual started to take center stage. It points to the apparently unstoppable merging of art with a new form of celebrity culture, one in which individual self-expression has become an obsession above all other considerations.” [JJ Charlesworth on Artists]

I’m ending the 20th Ccntury. There’s no one else out there doing what I’m doing. And the reason I have this position is that I want this position more than anyone else. Many people think that they want to be in a position to communicate and to be a leading artist, but if you would give them what they think they want, they would run from it right away. And I want it more than anyone else. I think that I’m going to be looked at as a very strong artist, and I would say within the 20th Century the only parallels would be Picasso and Duchamp.” [The Jeff Koons Show directed by Alison Chernick]

“The essayist is a self-liberated man, sustained by the childish belief that everything he thinks about, everything that happens to him, is of general interest. He is a fellow who thoroughly enjoys his work, just as people who take bird walks enjoy theirs. Each new excursion of the essayist, each new “attempt,” differs from the last and takes him into new country. This delights him. Only a person who is congenitally self-centered has the effrontery and the stamina to write essays.” [E.B. White on artists]

My parties all have big names
And I greet them with the widest smile
Tell them how my life is one big adventure
And always they’re amazed
When I show them ’round my house, to my bed
I had it made like a mountain range
With a snow-white pillow for my big fat head
And my heaven will be a big heaven
And I will walk through the front door
[Peter Gabriel Big Time]

“… Basquiat, which was made for $3.3 million put up by art collectors and newsprint moguls Peter Brant and Joseph Allen and by Schnabel himself, definitely has commercial possibilities. As the director of the first widely distributed feature film ever made about an artist by another artist, Schnabel has opened up the art world to outsiders without simplifying its sophistication or sensationalizing its excesses. “The whole point,” says Schnabel, who also wrote the script, “was not to have a tourist make this movie, and not to turn everybody into stereotypes.” “What’s so lovely is that this film helps belie Julian’s reputation as a monster,” says David Bowie, who plays Basquiat’s idol and mentor, Andy Warhol. “The guy just has this marvelous swirling romantic sense of the mysteries and journeys of life, which perhaps doesn’t come through in his paintings, because the statements he’s making are much more oblique. Julian understands how to tell a story. He knows how to empathize with the feelings all of us have.” [Vanity Fair Schnabel’s Basquiat]

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