Friday, September 27, 2013

Art Or Excrement?

It seems upper-crust Brits still delight in bagging those Down Under.
A leading British art critic has savaged the Royal Academy's new Australia exhibition - the largest exhibition of Australian art ever assembled abroad - which opened last weekend in London.
Has the Sydney Sun set on Ozzie art?
The Sunday Times' Waldemar Januszczak described indigenous art by some of Australia's best artists as liquid diarrhoea, and opined that its native art work "amounts to a market in decorative rugs" and "tourist tat". Frederick McCubbin's famous The Pioneer was called "poverty porn", and Fred Williams' desert landscape as "thick cowpats of minimalism".
Januszczak saved his most scathing attack for John Olsen's Sydney Sun, bought by Australia's National Gallery for A$500,000 in 2000. According to him, it "successfully evokes the sensation of standing under a cascade of diarrhoea."
Olsen, for his part, was extremely magnanimous in his response to the criticism: "You can call it diarrhoea or energy - it just depends on what you ate last night." Olsen went on to say the exhibition shows Ockers have their own way of looking at things: "We don't give a damn about what (the Brits) say we are. Such a review is endeavouring to put the colonials in their place. Ha-bloody-ha. I'd say it was extremely foolish."
Just for the record, Ozzie critics are equally scathing about the exhibition, calling it a "clumsy embarrassment"...

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