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Air Guitar: Essays on Art & Democracy Paperback – August 2, 1997
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Finally obliged to theorize his impolite tastes, judgments and ideas, Hickey lays his prejudices a little barer than altogether becomes them. Even caught in that old trap, however, he's as good as it gets, starting with his prose. Although his diction is often highfalutin (he was doing a doctoral thesis about Foucault and Derrida way back in 1967), his rhythms aren't, and he's more than fluent in colloquial English--I mean, the guy can flat-out write. -- Los Angeles Times Sunday Book Review, Robert Christgau
Top Customer Reviews
I was really taken by his unabashed, intimate style for several chapters of the book, until he began his defenses of art dealing and art criticism and his pompous attacks on 'spectators' versus 'participants' (are critics participants?) in his version of the art world. Sorry Dave, this doesn't wash and you know it --- simply announcing that 'Art is not a commodity' simplifies a huge can of worms best dealt with by Debord or even Hakim Bey, not by an art dealer aspiring to belong to this community, rather than getting dirty in the spectating and profiteering himself. When I hit the end of a couple of these verbose defenses of his history of 'dirty occupations', I was left thinking, 'Is it that important you were an art dealer?', or 'Who really cares that you're an art critic?'.
I simply want to be regaled with tales of Sigfried and Roy, or stomp in the boots of Hank Williams, or read Dave's ridiculous opinions on Chet Baker and, most importantly, laugh (or even smile out loud). This is where he is at his best, and consequently where the book shines. It is great writing, indeed, but too bad Dave feels it's necessary to namedrop and pontificate to purge himself from the sea of soulless art critics. Just do what you do best, and write!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a collection of critical essays on various American popular media from the back half of the 20th century. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Ryan
Absolutely enjoyable read. dave hickey is an art critic that knows how to write.Published 7 months ago by Melodious Thunk
i got this volume around 2003 while attending RISD. It was a hyper craze at the time, circulating amongst my friends. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Casey Glover
I loved every word. It brought back so many memories and introduced me to new ones.Published 13 months ago by sarah morgan wingfield
Super book, great condition. Well worth the investment to own.Published 17 months ago by Nathan Hendrickson
Better than "OK" condition mentioned in description, I'm very pleased with this purchase and even more enthralled by the content!Published 18 months ago by KLAVA
Great read! Love Hickey's style. Might buy it for friends who are not even interested in art much but would love his prose and style.Published 20 months ago by Lexpert
Early delivery, I love it :) Book is in brand new condition. Everything is perfect. I love it.Published on June 26, 2014 by Mango