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me to  publish  in these pages  a  list of artists who   What happened seems to have been that designers   position.  Certainly  he  will  need  to  fill  in  rather
     have participated, so that some record of the event   and technicians took over and the artists fell by the   carefully  the  steps  of  any  argument  hopefully
     will exist. The fact that this will happen after the   wayside  (not  to  mention  the  art).  An  incredible   designed  to  establish  that  my  views  entail  self­
     exhibition  should  prevent  any  pollution  of  the   amount  of  time,  correspondence,  publicity,  and   contradiction  or manifest absurdity.  Had  it been
     concepts taking place.                     money  was spent  on this  show;  the  money  often   so,  I  do  believe  that I  should have  noticed;  and
     L.J.  Grobes                               spent prejudicially, some artists receiving travel or   the mere assertion that it is so is unpersuasive.
     3 Roseneath Terrace                       expense funds,  others  not;  necessity  of their pre­  As for name-calling: I  have  argued at some  length
     Edinburgh 9                                sence for installing work was not the criterion.   and  in  several  ways  for  the  conclusions  that  I
     P.S. Having just returned from Wisconsin I have  The issue here is not merely the mistreatment of one   summarized briefly in the phrases that Mr Harring­
     only now seen your October issue. I was surprised  person and one person's art. It involves the lack of   ton quotes.  He has  evidently not been  persuaded
     and  aggrieved  that  you  should  have  seen  fit  to  respect  shown  all  artists  and  their  work  by  art   by me, but if he is unable to distinguish between
     publish  anything by Seifadinov, who I see claims  institutions in general, and it involves the reluctance   an  articulated  theoretical  position  of  moderate
     some sort of dubious kinship with me. He was only  of most artists to make their grievances public. The   complexity and the mere expression of abuse, then
     in U griach between  1948 and '50 and the Second  reasons are understandable-distaste for publicity,   he provides us with e':idence of a sort that argument
     Manifesto was not of course published until  1953.  fear of retribution from other institutions, the time   is wasted in the arts.']
                                                that must be spent in any sustained protest. It also
                                                involves the broader issue of an artist's control over
     Open letter to Jewish Museum               his  work,  the  point  on  which  the  Art  Workers'
     Open Letter to Karl Katz, Director,        Coalition was founded in January  1969. This, and   Post-Object Art
     TheJewish Museum, New York City            the above, combined with the absurd fact that the   Donald Karshan's piece is a puzzler  (Sept.  1970).
     When Jack Burnham invited me to participate in   show, in its almost totally inoperative state, is going   Having been written to introduce an exhibition of
     the 'Software'  exhibition at the Jewish Museum I   to travel to the Smithsonian, make it all the more   'conceptual art',  it is quite  unclear  to  the  reader
     happily  accepted.  I  was  to  have  my  Dialectic   necessary  to  make  public  now  the inequities  and   what degree  of relationship  he  sees  between  con­
     Triangulation;  a  Visual Philosophy,  programmed  for   iniquities suffered by Miss Denes.
     3-dimensional  computer  display  presentation.  It   Lucy R.Lippard (for the Art Workers' Coalition),   ceptual art and the 'radical'  art which he chooses
                                                                                          to  write  about  under  the  term  Post-Object  Art.
     was called Matrix of Knowledge.           Vito  Acconci,  John  Baldessari,  Robert  Barry,   His lack of clarity is prize-winning; a sort of tour de
     Because of the nature of the presentation I had to  Scott  Bradner,  Donald  Burgy,  Carl  Fernbach­  force  of  that  convoluted  style which has  made  so
     do  extensive  research  and  worked  seven  days  a  Flarsheim, John  Giorno,  Hans  Haacke,  Douglas   much of artistic criticism a stale joke.
     week through the  summer.  At  first  everyone  was  Huebler, Joseph  Kosuth,  Les  Levine,  Lawrence   His statement, for instance, that Post-Object Art is
     very nice, assuring me that my program would be   Weiner.                            marked by a 'complete break from formal aesthetic
     finished in ample time for the opening. But as time
     passed,  assurances  turned  to  evasions  and  finally   Brook on Greenberg         considerations'  may  be  true,  but  he  does  not
                                                                                          wonder  (as he should) whether any art is possible
     just  double  talk.  Ten  days  before  the  opening  I                              under such circumstances, nor does he consider the
     learned  by  sheer  chance  that  my  piece  not  only  It seems quite clear that we will never conclusively   possibility that the contemporary forms of concep­
     was not finished but that it had hardly been begun.  settle  the  dispute  that  is  reflected  in  Donald   tual art may be contributing new 'formal aesthetic
     Again I was given excuses and told not to worry,  Brook's comments on Mr Greenberg's lecture, but   considerations' to those which we hold as traditions.
     but  the  show  opened  without  my  program  ever  there may be some significance to the fact that Mr   It is doubtful, also, whether in the past (pre-Manet)
     coming near completion.                   Brook, in his summary, does slip into what could be   painting  and  sculpture  always  and  exclusively
     Carl Fernbach-FlarsheiIQ and I had been told we  characterized  as  'name-calling'.  The  conceptual   focused on 'a thought external to the work itself ',
     had four computers for the six months of the show,  and philosophical machinery is, he says, 'unrealisti­  because it can be argued that  beyond the appear­
     but  onry  one  came  through.  We  each  wrote  3--4  cally  primitive',  and  the  particular  judgements   ance of an external thought there is in every great
     programs,  but onf,y one was used.  My piece,  to be  tend,  he  adds, to be 'authoritarian'.
     done in 3-dimensions, was reduced to two. We were  If Mr Brook makes these judgements accorcling to   work  a  conceptual  awareness  that  sees  the  art
                                                                                          itself  in  an  existence  apart  from  the  object  it
     told  we  could  not see  the  work  until  a  few  days  the principles  which he  supports, then we should   portrays  (or its 'external thought').
     before the opening. The computer was  placed  in  view  them  as,  merely,  expressions  of  the  values
     the hottest room of the museum where it constantly  which  have  been  given  to  him  by  the  particular   To  confound  the  matter  further,  he  derides  the
                                                                                          'marriage' between the art forms of the preceding
     overheated  and  kept  breaking•  down.  What  social context from. which he emerged,  and of the
     glimpses  I  could  get,  ·before  the  computer  was  particular  feelings  that he  experienced  as  he was   three centuries  and  the  'new  consciousness  of  the
                                                                                          twentieth century' as a 'superficial and unharmoni­
     removed from the  show  a  few  days  later,  proved  exposed  to the  Greenberg lecture. He would  not,   ous one'. One wonders whether Picasso or Pollock
     that most of my instructions had been ignored or  by  his  own  contentions,  be  making  a  judgement
     never  transmitted.  I  had  assumed  that  I  could  that was reducible to any single common scale.   would agree. His piece is studded with these very
                                                                                          large assumptions.
     trust  the  technical  advisor  assigned  to  help  the  I  have  a  'feeling',  however,  that  in  making  his   Finally,  as he moves in rapid succession over and
     artists. But in the end, all concerned did their best  judgements of Mr Greenberg's  views, Mr Brook is   around  a  dozen  bits  and  fragments  of  ideas,
     to conceal the facts from the public and press. My  using Greenberg's principles rather than his own.   Karshan makes the astounding statement that 'It
     work and I were treated as a joke.         It may be possible to test the relative adequacy of   is  the  young  artists,  and  the  young  artists  alone,
     Having to write a letter like this is distressing, but  these  two  viewpoints  by  projecting  them  in  a   who define what art is, and will be'. I believe that
     I must protest the overall incompetence  that sur­  manner to make possible an estimate of the likely,   every  young  artist  who  has  achieved  excellence
     rounded  this  exhibition.  I  blame  no  one  person.  ultimate implications of each.   would deny this; that those who will never achieve
     I was caught in the gears of a system within which  If  we assume  that Mr  Greenberg  is correct,  then   excellence will embrace it; and that the statement
     shows of this type are financed and publicized with  when  two  critics  offered  clearly  contradictory   is,  after  all,  but  an  abortive  effort  to  bridge  the
     complete cynicism, and the end always justifies the  judgements  about  a  certain  work,  the  limits  of   generation gap.
     means. The waves close over it and nobody gives a  alternative possibilities could be stated as:   He  continues  for  several  additional  paragraphs
     damn.                                        1. Both critics are wrong in their judgement;  that have little obvious relevance, and even less to
     Agnes C. Denes                               2. One critic is right, and the other is wrong;  the  intellectual  bouillabaisse  which  has  gone
      New York City                               3. But both cannot be right.
                                                If we assume that Mr Brook is correct, then when   before.
                                                two  critics  offered  clearly  contradictory  judge­  Monroe Bush
      The undersigned  support Agnes Denes in her pro­  ments,  we  would  have  to  allow  the  possibility   Boulder, Colorado
      test against the mistreatment of her work and herself   that both are 'right'.      USA
      as an artist. She does not mention in her letter that a   In this latter case we might also have to acknow­
      Conde-Nast publication was to do a feature on her   ledge  that  the  judgement  of  any  critic  does  not
      work which had to be cancelled when photographer   really 'mean' anything, and that it is, really, of no
      and  writer  arrived  at the museum  and  found  no   'value'.                      'Vacuum in Art Education'
      piece."Nor that the technical advisor told her at one   R. Ward Harrington          Jonathan Benthall begins his article 'The Vacuum
      point he would not do her work because he did not   New York City Community College  in Art Education'  (October) with two grossly mis­
      like  her  and  did  not like  women.  Nor that Jack   Brooklyn,  NY                leading  statements  concerning  the  INSEA  70
      Burnham,  who  organized  the show,  was  so -dis­  [Donald-Brook writes:           World  Congress.  In  the  first  place,  it  should  be
      gusted at the way it turned out that he washed his   'I'm  inclined  to  doubt  that  Mr  Harrington  has  made quite clear that the one day he spent at the
      hands of all curatorial responsibility to the artists or   properly  understood  what  it  is  that  I  argue  for  Congress,  the  Tom Hudson day,  was  not in any
      to the way their work was installed.      (and against) in my discussion of Mr Greenberg's  way  representative  of  the  Congress  as  a  whole.
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