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Art School: (Propositions for the 21st Century) (MIT Press) Paperback – September 11, 2009
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Steven Henry Madoff's anthology appears at a particularly apt moment, as the development of social, research-based, and post-studio forms of artistic practice raise questions about central tenets of traditional art education. With essays and discussions by important theorists, artists, and curators, this book lays the ground for a critical debate on the future of the art school.(Bruce Altshuler, Director, Program in Museum Studies, New York University)
An indispensable source of experienced voices: artists, teachers, theorists, art historians, critics, administrators, former students, curators. Art School is an amazing cross-section of art world contributors providing as complete a picture as is imaginable on the needs and possibilities of the art school in the 21st century.(Garry Kennedy, former President and Professor Emeritus, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design)
Its positive attitude and open-ended, forward-thinking discussions make this text an essential read for anyone considering any kind of arts education.(Amanda Rataj C Magazine)
About the Author
Steven Henry Madoff, an award-winning writer, editor, and poet, has written extensively on contemporary art for such publications as Artforum, the New York Times, and Time magazine, and published numerous monographs on leading artists. He is Senior Critic at Yale University's School of Art.
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I didn't make it through all of the "surveys" in the appendix--responses from artists about their own experiences as students and teachers. The anecdotes are "proof" that everyone's experience with education is highly individual, subjective, contingent on properties of environments and people, that no one pedagogical system can have universal effectiveness--which, once you've read through all the essays in the book, is a moot point.
Re: The Kindle edition, I've never seen an ebook like this one before. It looks more like a PDF, with an interface that keeps the pages of the printed edition separate and numbered. It's clear that the publishers put a lot of resources into producing the ebook but I can't say that it improved readability.
The real beauty of this book, so far, is that it discerts how the art world actually functions; not refering by way to financial power, but of the history chase and denial. It explains how, probably mostly because of Duchamp, there is a constant struggle with mentor, how this pushes art forward, and how the predators with money prey upon the artists, who by the way are not innocent. In essay form, this book will make you look differently at art education in general and the art world as a whole. I just started reading it, but know it will be an important manuscript that may push forward a change in art education on all levels.
If you like thick, meaningful discussion that requires educated thought, buy this.