I often wonder what it takes to be an art critic. How does one describe art in words? Most artists are allergic to words and how to vocalize the true meaning behind their art. As a result, art critics are supposed to translate “clues” from the artist. One art critic that investigates this process is Lucy R. Lippard.
Ms. Lippard is a critic, curator, writer, columnist, and activist. She has published over twenty books, received the Guggenheim Fellowship, granted the National Endowment for the Arts twice, and many other accolades. Her essays are considered to be required reading for the investigation of art within the realms of aesthetics and politics.
Lippard: “I intensely dislike the word ‘critic,’ because it puts you in an antagonistic position to artists. I’ve learned everything that I know about art from artists… I see myself as an advocate and an activist and a writer.” Most artists don’t perceive critics as advocates. However, good critics push and strive to see the best in the art world.
Artists that don’t critically think, their art suffers and stays stagnant. Critical thinking demands an artist to evaluate the true motivation behind their art. Without it, the art becomes void and without true meaning. Why should the viewer care to look at your art?
I believe the critic’s job is to make people think and Lucy Lippard is a master…