Jerry Saltz Quotes


Of course art world ethics are important. But museums are no purer than any other institution or business. Academics aren't necessarily more high-minded than gallerists.

Energy and art go where they will.

Art is a self-replicating force.

I hate art auctions.

When art wins everyone wins.

New York being what it is our museums are vertical not horizontal. That means the stumbling blocks to architectural clarity are unavoidable - but certainly surmountable.

The Met is not only the finest encyclopedic museum of art in the United States; it is arguably the finest anywhere.

I know it's dangerous to take on bloggers. They can go after you every day all day long and anonymous people can chime in too.

Abstraction is one of the greatest visionary tools ever invented by human beings to imagine decipher and depict the world.

Abstraction brings the world into more complex variable relations; it can extract beauty alternative topographies ugliness and intense actualities from seeming nothingness.

Early-twentieth-century abstraction is art's version of Einstein's Theory of Relativity. It's the idea that changed everything everywhere: quickly decisively for good.

Think of an abstract painting as very very low relief - a thing not a picture.

Now people look at 'The Scream' or Van Gogh's 'Irises' or a Picasso and see its new content: money. Auction houses inherently equate capital with value.

Auction houses run a rigged game. They know exactly how many people will be bidding on a work and exactly who they are. In a gallery works of art need only one person who wants to pay for them.

Auctions are bizarre combinations of slave market trading floor theatre and burlesque... a lot of people are going to be making a lot of excuses or maintaining that they were never part of this.

Art is changing. Again. Here. Now. Opportunities to witness this are rare so attend and observe.

Art is good bad boring ugly useful to us or not.

Poor Georgia O'Keeffe. Death didn't soften the opinions of the art world toward her paintings.

John Baldessari the 79-year-old conceptualist has spent more than four decades making laconic ironic conceptual art-about-art both good and bad.

I have a soft spot for art that in terms of subject matter and material is in bad taste.

Summer is a great time to visit art museums which offer the refreshing rinse of swimming pools - only instead of cool water you immerse yourself in art.

Outside museums in noisy public squares people look at people. Inside museums we leave that realm and enter what might be called the group-mind getting quiet to look at art.

Venice is the perfect place for a phase of art to die. No other city on earth embraces entropy quite like this magical floating mall.

Megacollectors suppose they can enter art history by spending astronomical amounts.

The art world is molting - some would say melting. Galleries are closing; museums are scaling back.

A sad fact of life lately at the Museum of Modern Art is that when it comes to group shows of contemporary painting from the collection the bar has been set pretty low.

I've always said that an art critic can put aside politics around art.

Many say an art dealer running a museum is a 'conflict of interest.' But maybe the art world has lived an artificial or unintentional lie all of these years when it comes to conflicts of interest.

Make an enemy of jealousy and envy. As fast and soon as you can"¦. The art world is high school with money.

Art usually only makes the news in America when the subject is money.

I like that the art world isn't regulated.

Contrary to popular opinion things don't go stale particularly fast in the art world.

Art is a way of showing the outside world what your inside world is like.

To me nothing in the art world is neutral. The idea of 'disinterest' strikes me as boring dishonest dubious and uninteresting.

The forties seventies and the nineties when money was scarce were great periods when the art world retracted but it was also reborn.

Kinkade estimated that one of his paintings hung in every twenty homes in America. Yet the art world unanimously ignores or reviles him. Me included.

The last time money left the art world intrepid types maxed out their credit cards and opened galleries and a few of them have become the best in the world.

The art world is an all-volunteer force. No one has to be here if he or she doesn't want to be and we should be associating with anyone we want to.

The New York art world readily proves people wrong. Just when folks say that things stink and flibbertigibbet critics wish the worst on us all because we're not pure enough good omens appear.

Once artists are expected to shock it's that much harder for them to do so.

Our culture now wonderfully alchemically transforms images and history into artistic material. The possibilities seem endless and wide open.

The price of a work of art has nothing to do with what the work of art is can do or is worth on an existential alchemical level.

Robert Rauschenberg was not a giant of American art; he was the giant. No American created so many aesthetic openings for so many artists.

After its hothouse incubation in the seventies appropriation breathed important new life into art. This life flowered spectacularly over the decades - even if it's now close to aesthetic kudzu.

Mark Grotjahn's large new paintings abound with torrents of ropy impasto laid down in thickets cascading waves and bundles that swell braid around or overlap one another.

Elizabeth Peyton the artist known for tiny dazzling portraits of radiant youth is now painting tiny dazzling portraits of radiant middle age.

Certainty sees things in restrictive protective aggressive ways and thus isn't seeing at all.

I rage against Vincent van Gogh for needing to die at 37 after painting for only ten years.

Maybe the museum [of Arts and Design ]needs to follow the advice of its acronym and not be afraid to go a little M.A.D.

Among living artists George Condo may be the most embraced by the powers that be.

Sometimes good art jumps out at me; most of the time I see bad art or see nothing at all and just drift feeling weird pretending to be fine.

Just as Pollock used the drip to meld process and product Richter 'found' and used the smudge and the blur to ravish the eye creating works of psychic and physical power.

Many things happened in the sixties but the period is no more significant better or more 'political' than today. It's time to turn the page.

Biennial culture is already almost irrelevant because so many more people are providing so many better opportunities for artists to exhibit their work.

I see 30 to 40 gallery shows a week and no matter what kind of mood I'm in no matter how bad the art is I almost always feel better afterward. I can learn as much from bad art as from good.

Craft is not a category; it's a means. The folks running the museum [Museum of Arts and Design]are sharp and they know this but they are in a bind.

To me the building [of Museum of Arts and Design]now looks like a lovely jewel box and the tiled façade reminds me of a heat shield.

Don't talk. I can't hear myself see.

A great artist has a unique vision...obsession. They are someone willing to fail flamboyantly.

When I criticize Joseph Beuys or Francis Bacon nobody calls those opinions anti-male. Putting female artists or their subject matter off-limits is itself sexist and limiting.

Galleries needn't be exactly like White Columns purely because times are bad again. But the idea of this special space could - should - help shape what comes next.

Yes 85 percent of the art you see isn't any good. But everyone has a different opinion about which 85 percent is bad. That in turn creates fantastically unstable interplay and argument.

Nearly a half-century on from feminism simply being a woman artist is still a revolutionary act. And getting one's work shown continues to be met by enormous inbuilt resistance.

A lot of people still think caring about clothes is a dubious unserious frivolous girlie thing.

In some ways Lawler is a conceptual Diane Arbus. She's a stalker who takes advantage of situations. She pulls back curtains causing normal things to look freakish and the freakish to turn mundane.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is unsurpassed at presenting more than 50 centuries of work. I go there constantly seeing things over and over better than I've ever seen them before.

Ofili is still a champion. It would be a huge mistake to think otherwise.

My culture-deprived aspirational mother dragged me once a month from our northern suburb - where the word art never came up - to the Art Institute of Chicago. I hated it.

In art scandal is a false narrative a smoke screen that camouflages rather than reveals. When we don't know what we're seeing we overreact.

Giorgio Morandi's paintings make me think that artists may not totally choose or even control their subjects or style.

The secret of food lies in memory - of thinking and then knowing what the taste of cinnamon or steak is.

The New York gallery scene being as incredibly overpopulated and overmoneyed as it is deep conflicts and contradictions aren't hard to find.

There are many many art worlds. Art contains multitudes.

All great contemporary artists schooled or not are essentially self-taught and are de-skilling like crazy.

Few contemporary artists mined the space between the ordinary and the strange better than Orozco did.

I have never really cooked don't know how to use my dishwasher and subsist mainly on prepared deli takeout. I don't even eat in restaurants much.

The art gods cooked up something special for James Ensor.

Koons's work has always stood apart for its one-at-a-time perfection epic theatricality a corrupted almost sick drive for purification and an obsession with traditional artistic values.

Too many younger artists critics and curators are fetishizing the sixties transforming the period into a deformed cult a fantasy religion a hip brand and a crippling disease.

Being critical of art is a way of showing art respect.

While the space for artists and curators has increased enormously maybe just maybe that's left room for too many people calling themselves artists and curators who are simply not up to the term.

To engage with art we have to be willing to be wrong venture outside our psychic comfort zones suspend disbelief and remember that art explores and alters consciousness simultaneously.

Giant group events are distorting organisms: You can like and hate them in rapid succession.

The greatest work of art about New York? The question seems nebulous. The city's magic and majesty are distilled in the photographs of Alfred Stieglitz and Paul Strand.

Calling a young artist 'great' these days can give one the heebie-jeebies: The word has been denatured in the past decade.

Decades ago Gerhard Richter found a painterly philosopher's stone. Like Jackson Pollock before him he discovered something that had been in painting all along always overlooked or discounted.

John Currin's exaggerated realism and his twisted women kept me off balance never knowing if they were sincere or ironic or some new emotion.

Photography is the easiest thing to make and one of the hardest things to make well.

In the late nineties Katy Grannan began making haunting photographs of people who had extraordinary inner yens to be seen by strangers.

Galleries began growing in both number and size in the late seventies when artists who worked in lofts wanted to exhibit their work in spaces similar to the ones the art was made in.

Turns out Picasso's passion for uncertainty mystery and the thrill of life never ended.

Lucian Freud's career affirms that the only thing an artist can do is remain true to whatever vision (lack of) talent or ideas that happened to pick them in order to be made known to the world.

The German ueber-photographer Andreas Gursky was the perfect pre-9/11 artist.

Scandal is only human.

Almost all institutions own a lot more art than they can ever show much of it revealing for its timeliness genius or sheer weirdness.

All art comes from other art and all immigrants come from other places.

In 1998 Artnet was the site that convinced me that if my writing didn't exist online it didn't exist at all. It showed me criticism's future.

I'm not for or against video - or any medium or style for that matter.

Money is something that can be measured; art is not. It's all subjective.

Recessions are hard on people but they are not hard on art.