Essays on Art and Language

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MIT Press, Aug 8, 2003 - Art - 326 pages
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These essays by art historian and critic Charles Harrison are based on the premise that making art and talking about art are related enterprises. They are written from the point of view of Art & Language, the artistic movement based in England -- and briefly in the United States -- with which Harrison has been associated for thirty years. Harrison uses the work of Art & Language as a central case study to discuss developments in art from the 1950s through the 1980s.According to Harrison, the strongest motivation for writing about art is that it brings us closer to that which is other than ourselves. In seeing how a work is done, we learn about its achieved identity: we see, for example, that a drip on a Pollock is integral to its technical character, whereas a drip on a Mondrian would not be. Throughout the book, Harrison uses specific examples to address a range of questions about the history, theory, and making of modern art -- questions about the conditions of its making and the nature of its public, about the problems and priorities of criticism, and about the relations between interpretation and judgment.

 

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Contents

A Kind of Context
1
Conceptual Art and the Suppression of the Beholder
29
Indexes and Other Figures
63
The Conditions of Problems
82
Jackson Pollock
129
the Artists Studio
150
On the Surface of Painting
175
Reading the Museum
206
Unit Cure Unit Ground
223
Painting as Cure
244
Some Other Sense
251
Notes
257
Index
297
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About the author (2003)

Charles Harrison is Professor of the History and Theory of Art at the Open University, UK.

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