Read Jonathan Jones’s art blog today- I cruise the art blogs every now and then. Pop art is a hot topic right now because of the Pop Life exhibition currently going on at the Tate Modern in London. I blogged about that a few days ago. I hope to have the chance to go see it when i’m in London next week.

In the meantime, Jonathan Jones’s take on the status of pop and contemporary art, while only one man’s opinion, is all too often true. There’s a lot of “crap” out there. The term “pop art” has morphed and changed and become a catch-all phrase for so many different kinds of art…some i wouldn’t even classify as art. And the museum circuit contributes to this “pulling the wool over our eyes” mentality in the art world.

I recently went to an exhibit in a well-known contemporary art museum. The exhibit was a conference room you could walk into. There was a big empty boardroom-type table with 8 chairs and by each chair was a telephone. You could sit in the chairs and pick up the recievers of the telephone and listen to different recorded messages. I was stunned. The point, it turns out, was for this exhibit to be a social commentary on the state of our working world today. Everything is recorded. Everything is electronic. You can’t get a real human being on the phone. Ok. So, yes, that’s definitely something unique about contemporary society. We should take notice of it…we should talk about what it’s doing to human communication. But a museum exhibit??? Really?

There’s too much blurring today between idea and execution. What happened to painting and drawing. and creativity…perspective….composition…the subtleties of color. A table, 8 chairs, and some telephones? Great idea. No execution. Definitely gives you something to think about, but is it art?


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