Art Monthly 448: Jul-Aug 2021

Art Monthly cover Art Monthly back cover
Kader Attia

Interviewed by Maria Walsh

Workless Art Work

Dave Beech

Fehras Publishing Practices

Profile by Saim Demircan

Letter from Lisbon

Sarah Messerschmidt

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Kader Attia, Reason’s Oxymorons, 2015


Repair and Reparation

Kader Attia interviewed by Maria Walsh

By pretending that we’re able to go back to the original when we repair things, we are denying the accident, and then we are denying time and history, which is the complete opposite of pre-modern societies in which history and the incorporation of injury was also the incorporation of time.

Art Monthly cover  

From the Back Catalogue
Art v the Law
Colin Perry discusses art that uses the law as an artistic medium
First published 2010 – now free online

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Tehching Hsieh, One Year Performance (Time Clock Piece), 1980–81


Workless Art Work

Dave Beech on the persistence of myths and counter-myths around the special status of art and artists

Art has a long history of idealising its own distinctive forms of activity, from the aesthetic experience of consuming artworks to the workless work of producing art. Myths of the so-called ‘man of taste’ and the myth of the genius do not only belong to the same historical transformation of culture but are twin developments.

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Fehras Publishing Practices, Borrowed Faces, 2020, publication detail


Fehras Publishing Practices

Saim Demircan examines the Berlin-based collective’s attempts to revisit publishing networks lost due to generations of war and migration in the MENA region

By retracing contested geographies and past conflicts across time, Fehras Publishing Practices has recuperated publishing as a space for cultural production.


Hancock’s Half Hour

The (now former) health secretary Matt Hancock rivalled his clownish TV namesake – an artists’ favourite – for persistent endeavour in the absence of any evident aptitude.

Ultimately, however, none of this is remotely funny, particularly for those who suffer from coulrophobia – a fear of clowns – which under this government is probably most of us.



Eddie Chambers responds to Tom Denman’s feature

The question that should surely be asked, by Tom Denman and by others, is why Tate Britain, the country’s leading national art collection, is in hock to commercially successful artists who surely, by definition, can take care of themselves and have no particular need for state or institutional patronage.

Tom Denman replies

I would like to add that if museums challenged the hegemony of the commercial sector instead of mirroring it as they are accustomed to doing, this would strengthen the potential for self-reflexivity from the museums and critical engagement with the objects they choose to exhibit, especially given the laissez-faire origins of institutions such as Tate.

Walk and Chew Gum

Henry Broome responds to Matthew Bowman

Who am I meant to reply to? Matthew Bowman or Immanuel Kant?

Matthew Bowman replies

Henry Broome seems to take himself as rebutting my argument when he is actually repeating exactly what I – and Immanuel Kant, dare I add – proclaimed.


Climate Trespassers

The heavy-handed Science Museum calls in police to evict teenagers protesting against Shell’s sponsorship of the museum’s climate-change exhibition; the ransacking of a Palestinian artist-led arts centre has led to some artists de-authoring works sold to supporters of the Israeli state; colonial-era statues across the UK continue to cause unrest after the interventions of government ministers; the education and culture secretaries both continue to fan the flames of their culture war; plus the latest on galleries, people, prizes and more.

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Mary Beth Edelson, Death of Patriarchy/A.I.R. Anatomy Lesson, 1976


Mary Beth Edelson 1933–2021
Maria Walsh

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Zineb Sedira, Sugar Routes, 2013 Liverpool Biennial


Glasgow International

Paul Carey-Kent

Liverpool Biennial: The Stomach and the Port

Bob Dickinson

Veronica Ryan: Along a Spectrum

Hettie Judah

Kerry Tribe: Standardised Patient

Adam Hines-Green

Leah Capaldi: Big Slit

Cherry Smyth

Bedwyr Williams: Milquetoast

Peter Suchin

CFGNY: Collecting Dissonance

Philomena Epps

Mercedes Azpilicueta: Bondage of Passions

Kathryn Lloyd

Matthew Barney: Redoubt

Morgan Quaintance

Emily Wardill: Soft Spot

Mark Prince

Remote Work

Lubaina Himid: The Mourning Kangas

Bob Dickinson

Leo Fitzmaurice: Enjoy Civic Life

Tom Emery

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Eleanor Cully in a performance of Jack Sheen’s Hollow propranolol séance


Jack Sheen: Croon harvest

Ashiya Eastwood

Given how long it had been since most of us had been around so many other people or experienced any kind of public art performance, it was somewhat ironic that this first outing was one in which the phone was mostly used in place of the live voice, even though the people whose voices we were hearing were right there before us.

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Georgia Sagri, Breathing (5-1-5), 2020, performance, 5 March 2020, Mimosa House, London

Artists’ Books

Georgia Sagri: Stage of Recovery

Kiera Blakey

When Georgia Sagri arrived in New York from Athens in 2006, she noted that New Yorkers rarely left the house without the purpose of consuming something.


Amelia Horgan: Lost in Work – Escaping Capitalism

Gwen Burlington

The book is undeniably a bid against work as we know it, whilst also being a critique of the internal dynamics of capitalism.

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Helena Almeida, Untitled, 2010, from ‘All I Want – Portuguese Women Artists from 1900–2020’, Gulbenkian Foundation


Letter from Lisbon

Sarah Messerschmidt

If Lisbon’s contemporary art world is currently reckoning with its history, then this pandemic has provoked a collective reflection upon the societies we inhabit.

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Mick Peter, Gerroff!! (Or User Feedback), 2021, Hospitalfield, Arbroath

Letter from Arbroath and Dundee

Greg Thomas

Devolution of artistic culture across England, Scotland and Wales is often spoken of in nebulously positive terms without a clear sense of how the process might unfold differently in each.

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Antony Gormley, Clasp, 2018, digital rendering of installation at Newcastle University


A Curious Act of Vandalism

Henry Lydiate

In June 2021 an accused vandal, who admitted spray-painting a publicly sited sculpture by Antony Gormley, was found not guilty of committing an offence of criminal damage because the jury accepted the accused’s defence that ‘Gormley would have liked it’.

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