This Week in the Mercury


Thursday, September 15, 2011

Maybe the City's Most Engaged Art Audiences AREN'T at TBA...

Posted by Alison Hallett on Thu, Sep 15, 2011 at 11:29 AM

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In his review of Michael Reinsch's Gallery Walk, Matt Stangel has some choice words for the way TBA audiences approached Reinsch's public performance, as opposed to the way people on the street reacted to the work:

So, I wonder, what differentiates “art audiences” and “people who don't fucking care about your stupid fucking art”? The defining difference I keep coming to: Non-TBAers are more willing to engage, to ask questions, to react with blunt, qualitative assessments, to scream from car windows and laugh without hesitation.

The polite TBAgoer responses were, frankly, kind of disheartening: Clearly people weren't taking the time to figure out the work, nor were they willing to risk tarnishing a cultured veneer and— gasp— ask about what was going on. Palpable was the divide between onlookers with advanced knowledge of Gallery Walk, incidental audiences, and artsy folk who weren't willing to do what's necessary to figure it out.

Ultimately, I think Gallery Walk is for the public, but not necessarily the art-minded public. Maybe the street folks weren't always kind, but they were honest, and, in my mind at least, honesty equates respect.

Being polite in the fashion of the TBAer isn't honest or respectful, it's self-serving and dismissive.



Read the whole thing here.

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