Industry and Intelligence
Contemporary Art Since 1820
Series:Bampton Lectures in America
Aims and Scope
In Industry and Intelligence, the artist Liam Gillick writes a nuanced genealogy to help us appreciate contemporary art's engagement with history even when it seems apathetic or blind to current events. Taking a broad view of artistic creation from 1820 to today, Gillick follows the response of artists to incremental developments in science, politics, and technology. The great innovations and dislocations of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries have their place in this timeline, but their traces are alternately amplified and diminished as Gillick moves through artistic reactions to liberalism, mass manufacturing, psychology, nuclear physics, automobiles, and a host of other advances. He intimately ties the origins of contemporary art to the social and technological adjustments of modern life, which artists struggled to incorporate truthfully into their works.
- 208 pages
- 50 b&w illustrations
- COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY PRESS
- Professional and scholarly;
MARC recordMARC record for eBook
Forceful, persuasive and provocative, while Industry and Intelligence will no doubt find purchase as a set text in universities for those studying art history or curatorial studies, it would seem its most urgent readership should be artists themselves, whose struggle has been, and continues to be, one of finding a way to avoid being subsumed completely by the logic of the market: to escape the trap, as Gillick has it, of the 'capitalisation of the mind'.
Caroline A. Jones:
Read Gillick's book to find the packed sediment of conceptual art discourse undergoing metamorphic transformation—with the marketized artworld's slow heat, dull pressure, and surface torque leaving inevitable traces on an intelligent maker's mind.
Tom McDonough, Binghamton University, author of The Situationists and the City: A Reader:
In prose at once forthright and oblique, Liam Gillick attempts to extricate himself—and us, his readers—from the enveloping protoplasm known as 'contemporary art.' At the core of this book is a compelling alternative genealogy for our current condition, traced across four soft revolutions from 1820 to 1974. What that genealogy cumulatively reveals is a provocative diagnosis of the present as interminable: an entropic horizon against which artists and curators deploy their 'evasive markers.' With Industry and Intelligence, Gillick proves himself the most lucid inheritor of conceptualism's artist-writers, truly a latter-day Robert Smithson or Dan Graham.