Words to Be Looked At: Language in 1960s Art (MIT Press)

Words to Be Looked At: Language in 1960s Art (MIT Press)

Liz Kotz


Language has been a main point in visible artwork because the Sixties -- within the type of published texts, painted indicators, phrases at the wall, recorded speech, and extra. In Words to Be regarded At, Liz Kotz strains this custom to its beginnings, reading works of visible paintings, poetry, and experimental tune created in and round ny urban from 1958 to 1968. in lots of of those works, language has been diminished to an item approximately emptied of that means. Robert Smithson defined a 1967 exhibition on the Dwan Gallery as along with "Language to be checked out and/or issues to be Read." Kotz considers the anomaly of artists residing in a time of social upheaval who use phrases yet selected to not make statements with them. Kotz strains the proliferation of textual content in Sixties artwork to using phrases in musical notation and brief functionality ratings. She makes works the "bookends" of her examine: the "text rating" for John Cage's mythical 1952 paintings 4'33" -- written directions directing a performer to stay silent in the course of 3 arbitrarily decided time brackets -- and Andy Warhol's infamous a: a novel -- twenty-four hours of never-ending speak, taped and transcribed -- released by means of Grove Press in 1968. studying works by means of artists and poets together with Vito Acconci, Carl Andre, George Brecht, Douglas Huebler, Joseph Kosuth, Jackson Mac Low, and Lawrence Weiner, Kotz argues that the flip to language in Nineteen Sixties paintings was once a response to the advance of latest recording and transmission media: phrases took on a brand new materiality and urgency within the face of magnetic sound, videotape, and different rising digital applied sciences. Words to Be regarded At is generously illustrated, with photographs of many very important and influential yet little-known works.

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