Tag: vanity

SEVERE CORRECTION

SEVERE CORRECTION

CAREER SUICIDE

… of the art market. What were you thinking of, you dirty wee puppy? I’ll deal with you later. No, according to a University of Luxembourg study, the international art market is in a “mania phase” and the bubble is going to pop any time soon, leading to a “severe correction”. Countdown starting right now to an art exhibition called either Severe Correction or Mania Phase.

The contemporary art market has been a very bad, bad, dirty, disobedient and thoughtless pig.

The “zombie formalist” artists (i.e. makers of art as an asset class, devoid of narrative, representation, politics, ideology, etc.) and their handlers are partly to blame, but as the gentleman who created the term rightly says, and as I have also said in a various ways over the past few years about a hundred bloody times: “Since the entire market is entirely irrational, it can’t be rationally…

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9 MORE FUN FACTS ABOUT MARINA ABRAMOVIĆ THAT WILL SURPRISE YOU

9 MORE FUN FACTS ABOUT MARINA ABRAMOVIĆ THAT WILL SURPRISE YOU

CAREER SUICIDE

Abramovic BONUS fun fact: Marina’s head is actually very loosely balanced on her neck and it could fall off at any time!

Here are nine more facts about Madge Ab that will surprise you and fun you, inspired by this listicle of great importance which is definitely not filler hackwork at Artnet News, in which we learn that the “grandmother of performance art”* did performance art at a museum, her mother didn’t like seeing pictures of her daughter’s breasts, and she affects not to like being famous despite gleefully hanging out with the Beyoncé family and Lady Gaga. None of these are particularly surprising or fun facts and nor are the other six “fun”, “surprising” facts surprising or fun, but what can you do? Clickbait headlines gonna bait clicks.

* Not the nice grandmother, the other grandmother that the mother and grandchildren of performance art would really like to get…

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APPALLING DISCOVERY OF THE DAY: AMAZON ART

APPALLING DISCOVERY OF THE DAY: AMAZON ART

CAREER SUICIDE

gacy-pogo-the-clown

NO TALENT? NO PROBLEM!

I’ve illustrated this post with a clown painting that is definitely not from Amazon Art because it would be unfair to single out any one artist as an example of how bad the art [sic] section of Amazon is, due to the fact that all of the art on Amazon is totally shit. I’m sure hardly any of the artists on Amazon Art are serial killers, like Mr. John Wayne Gacy was, but his totally fucked up oeuvre is actually somewhat better and definitely no more disturbing than some of the efforts on sale via Amazon. For example, check out Impressionism… wait, what? These artists are doing the opposite of keeping Impressionism alive; they’re inviting Impressionism into their house and doing a John Wayne Gacy on it. I’m afraid it’s possible to spend upwards of $3o,000 on a painting from Amazon art. I…

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F-ART

F-ART

CAREER SUICIDE

Spam_wallI love receiving unsolicited enticements to spend £28 a year for an online portfolio site that has no professional standing or provenance and looks like crap. Even better when it’s written in pidgin English by a company apparently based in London. Better still when I’ve asked them to unsubscribe me at least three times. I’m not sure if “Robert” really exists or if he really has a literacy age of eleven, so for now it suffices to say that there’s often a very good reason for unsolicited communications seeming like the work of a simpleton. Won’t you join me as I tally all the grammatical mistakes and logical errors in this one short piece of marketing?

Hello alistair gentry

Thanks to all participants we are now able to offer a professional portfolio and there are no more application’s fees to participate in all our selections.

I can’t really process…

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“SILK TROUSERS £575”

CAREER SUICIDE

Men's fashion: Free Expression - in pictures

OR: BOHEMIAN LIKE YOU

I know it’s almost cruelly easy to make fun of fashion “journalists” [sic] and the weird, sick, silent contract they have with their readers, i.e. they pretend expensive clothes are really important and worth talking about on a weekly or even a daily basis, while their readers pretend not to notice that media coverage of fashion bears little relationship to reality. Or rather, its relationship is abusive and codependent, like Carrie’s mother in the Stephen King horror story.

Sometimes cruelty is fun, though, especially when it’s easy. Thanks to (non-bearded and lacking an £820 Dries Van Noten coat) artist Emily Speed drawing attention to it, we can all point and laugh at what I suspect the perpetrator might call a “fashion story” about taking “inspiration from the distinctive layered-up uniform of the artist, one that is splashed with paint splatters, and is an eclectic mix…

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OMG, SRSLY?

OMG, SRSLY?

CAREER SUICIDE

OK you guys, I’m sorry but I may not be writing this blog for much longer because OMFG CAN’T BREATHE I’ve just been spotted by a talent scout! YO I GOT A GOLD LINK BITCHES. I’m getting exposure from just thinking about it…

TalentScoutsOnly joking, everybody. My real response was this: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha, ah, ah… ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha…

(CONTINUES)

*Taken to minor injuries unit, sedated and given oxygen*

(TWO HOURS LATER)

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ABSURDITY: A FEATURE, NOT A BUG

ABSURDITY: A FEATURE, NOT A BUG

CAREER SUICIDE

Spam_wall

“Advertising may be described as the science of arresting human intelligence long enough to get money from it.”

Stephen Leacock, The Perfect Salesman, in The Garden of Folly (1924).

Readers who’ve been interested in some of the resistance by artists to certain vanity art businesses and finishing schools (a great analogy pointed out by Gillian McIver) and the subsequent angry push back from them may still be wondering why anybody would have anything to do with them when their publicity material is so obviously daft and amateur, when there is no credible evidence whatsoever that they benefit the artists who pay them, when the people who run them seemingly can’t say or do anything without showing themselves up as not quite the full shilling or as obvious charlatans, and when no artist or professional in any credible sector of the arts has a good word to say for…

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THE PARALLAX VIEW

CAREER SUICIDE

Chris Barlow of Parallax Art Fair has written to me in response to my recent coverage of his venture. I’m also posting my response to him.

Dear Alistair,

I hope you are well and in good health.

I rarely read forums, but I noticed last evening that you have a blog post mentioning [REDACTED]. I’m writing to request that you consider removing reference to her in your blog. She is a likeable and hardworking person. I appeal to you out of consideration for a young person who may become disconsolate. Removing her name won’t alter your narrative which is geared mainly to attacking Parallax and me personally. The Linkedin backlink will still be there to draw readers to your blog too.

Having read your posts and other writings across your website in general, you do come across as someone who has clearly been hurt in the past and is…

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PARALLAX, EMPHASIS ON THE LAX

PARALLAX, EMPHASIS ON THE LAX

CAREER SUICIDE

BullshitQ: What do you get from Parallax Art Fair (sic) two months after your last request that they remove you from their mailing list and never contact you again under any circumstances because you will never be interested in what they’re offering, not to mention being implacably opposed to everything they do and stand for?

A: An almost identical email, of course! All that changed was the deadline for the submission of my all-important work samples. In their email of 12th November 2013 it was 6th December, while in the more recent email the deadline has mysteriously moved to 31st January.

Dear Alistair,

I am the director who oversees the largest artist art fair in Europe called Parallax Art Fair. I would like to know if an exhibiting opportunity at the ninth edition of the fair might interest you as an artist. I hope you don’t mind, I…

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“I CHOKED ON MY LOAD”

“I CHOKED ON MY LOAD”

CAREER SUICIDE

IMG_6858Those of you who are interested in the antics of “top tastemakers” Debut Contemporary should visit Charlie Tuesday Gates and read about her CON ARTIST demonstration/infiltration at their Christmas party. She’s brave (and firmly within the law– she very shrewdly checked with the police first!), righteously angry, funny, and among other things you will learn:

  • About Debut’s “CEO” [sic] Samir Ceric and his failed “airline” that wasn’t really. According to company records at Duedil.com he is 39 years old and has TWENTY-THREE known defunct businesses behind him. Therefore if they were spread out evenly throughout every year of his adult life this would amount to at least one defunct business for every single year since 1992. He retired from only three, i.e. in only three cases does it appear the company outlived his involvement. The closed companies include two (Globace Ltd, and the interestingly named Salon Gallery…

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DISINFORMATION CATALOGUE

DISINFORMATION CATALOGUE

CAREER SUICIDE

DC1

DO YOU LIKE EVENING CLASSES, TATLER, WILD CLAIMS, SPENDING MONEY AND BEING TREATED LIKE A BATTERY CHICKEN? IT’S YOUR LUCKY DAY

Thanks to several informants (who didn’t know about any of the other people who simultaneously tipped me off) I’ve become aware that my dear old friends, the vanity artist farmers Debut Contemporary, have been trawling for fat new wallets. Market Project is currently on hiatus and not being updated, but you can read my original article about Debut Contemporary there, plus hundreds of comments including damning– and in a few cases, somewhat heartbreaking if not harrowing– testimony from former clients of theirs. You can also read sock puppet comments from their cronies, and see documentation of failed attempts by these cronies to secretly defame me and my colleagues for criticising them.

I’ll get to Debut Con’s hilarious “information catalogue” for artists anon, but firstly here’s what was spammed…

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THE DUNNING-KRUGER EFFECT

THE DUNNING-KRUGER EFFECT

CAREER SUICIDE

In 1999 two researchers defined scientifically a phenomenon of cognitive bias that’s been well-known anecdotally for thousands of years: the truly incompetent have no idea how incompetent they really are, but they blunder on regardless. The original scientific paper puts it like this:

“People tend to hold overly favorable views of their abilities in many social and intellectual domains. The authors suggest that this overestimation occurs, in part, because people who are unskilled in these domains suffer a dual burden: Not only do these people reach erroneous conclusions and make unfortunate choices, but their incompetence robs them of the metacognitive ability to realize it. Across 4 studies, the authors found that participants scoring in the bottom quartile on tests of humor, grammar, and logic grossly overestimated their test performance and ability… Paradoxically, improving the skills of participants, and thus increasing their metacognitive competence, helped them recognize the limitations of their…

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THE INSUBSTANTIAL IN PURSUIT OF THE INSUFFERABLE

THE INSUBSTANTIAL IN PURSUIT OF THE INSUFFERABLE

CAREER SUICIDE

MartyInterpretiveDance

Following her recent ouroboros of star-fuckery with Jay-Z at his minstrel show for New York city’s art royalty, insufferable has-been and exploiter/abuser of low paid performers at LA MOCA Marina Abramović (brilliantly and succinctly demolished by Hrag Vartanian in this article as “the art world’s version of late Elvis”) has recently engaged in another act of “Abramović Method” mirror-in-mirror narcissism with the prolifically untalented Lady Gaga. The original video is absolutely bloody ghastly and evokes every bad undergraduate performance art piece ever made, but luckily somebody jazzed it up a bit with a Yakety Sax soundtrack. Much better.

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HE’S A CELEBRITY, GET HIM OUT OF HERE

HE’S A CELEBRITY, GET HIM OUT OF HERE

CAREER SUICIDE

There’s a frequently heard complaint in contemporary art galleries: “He can’t even draw. My five year old could do better.” Usually they’re perfectly and excruciatingly wrong, but finally an exhibition has come along where it would be entirely apposite and correct to make such a comment. It’s Bob Dylan’s Face Value at the National Portrait Gallery in London! And yes, your five year old could do better. Dylan even uses school art cupboard supplies to craft his masterpieces, just like a five year old. Alas his drawings did not find their proper home, i.e. stuck to the fridge door with a magnet.

Sandy Nairne, Director of the National Portrait Gallery, London, says: ‘Bob Dylan is one of the most influential cultural figures of our time. He has always created a highly visual world either with his words or music, or in paints and pastels. I am delighted that we…

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SOCIAL MEDIA VAMPIRES OF WHITECHAPEL

SOCIAL MEDIA VAMPIRES OF WHITECHAPEL

CAREER SUICIDE

I was recently notified of a new Twitter follower who in turn is followed by an interesting and unlikely institution: London’s Whitechapel Gallery.

OddFollower

The Whitechapel is into “serial entrepreneurs” and “fitness junkies”, apparently. “Whitechapel Art Gallery”=WAG. Coincidence? You decide.

Despite his profile and picture making him look like a spambot, from some cursory research this gentleman appears to be an entity vaguely resembling a real human being. He follows 653,041 accounts on Twitter. If he spent five seconds reading one tweet by each of these people it would take him 3,265,205 seconds, about 907 hours 0r roughly 38 days to do so. Again we’ll call these followers people for the sake of convenience even though we all know that with this number of them there’s certain to be thousands if not tens of thousands of senseless bots among them.

It’s not unusual or untoward for an institution or business to have…

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COME TO DADA

COME TO DADA

CAREER SUICIDE

I’ve been helping several correspondents do detective work on some artist farming businesses who’ve tried to pick them up recently. My definition of artist farming is taking money from artists for vaguely defined services or for promises of success or sales that are deceptive and otherwise not as advertised. These schemes and businesses promise a lot but usually achieve little or nothing positive for the artist; they may indeed damage an artist’s credibility and their prospects of being taken seriously. They certainly don’t have the interests of artists or art buyers at heart in any way. All they care about is milking as many naive marks as possible. In Britain the same little pack of bandits seems to have about 90% of the artist farming business sewn up, they’re all friends with each other and they all co-validate each other’s lies and puffed-up CVs, linking to each other with bogus endorsements…

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THE ORA… THE ORA…

THE ORA… THE ORA…

CAREER SUICIDE

common-vampire-bat_505_600x450

Ten international galleries want you, like a vampire bat wants sleeping cattle. Premio Ora (“Premium Hours”) says that the “basic registration fee required as partial coverage for organizational expenses” is €60 to enter three art works for consideration. Poor things, only covering their organisational expenses partially. Each additional image after the first three is only €5 and luckily for them you, it’s possible to enter an unlimited number of works.

Yes, it’s another sketchy “opportunity” for artists to enter a competition where they pay for the remote opportunity of possibly getting an unpaid gallery show, i.e. something that an artist should usually be paid for, or at the very least should not have to pay for in order to be considered. I’m providing links here for the purpose of verification; I wouldn’t suggest visiting any of them unless you want to know which international galleries are involved in this farrago…

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PARKER HARRIS MATHS

PARKER HARRIS MATHS

CAREER SUICIDE

Parker Harris is “one of the leading visual arts consultancies in the UK“, responsible for a number of well-known schemes or competitions including the Jerwood Drawing Prize and, er… the Sunday Times Watercolour Competition. Most of them require an entry fee, and the fact that these competitions proliferate and stick around is de facto proof that they’re a nice little earner. So for the next few minutes let me be your Countdown-era Carol Vorderman (minus the sketchy ads for predatory debt consolidation companies who put people’s homes at risk, the sketchy ads for fish oil, etc, ad nauseum) as we do the maths on the “opportunities for artists” currently on offer.

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