Almost Everything You Need To Know About The 2013 Art World In One Single Image

In July of 2013, something monumental happened, sort of like the legal ceremony that officially consummated a long courtship between the art world and the realm of glitzy, celebrity-fixated tabloid culture. We’ll all remember this as the Year of Jay Z at Pace gallery; of Jerry Saltz “rap battling” Jay Z at Pace; of Lawrence Weiner and Andres Serrano joining the likes of Jemima Kirke in the nimbus of Jay Z’s fame. It was all for his “Picasso Baby” single, a song about art that, as many noted, was really about money. He wanted “Condos in [his] condos,” remember?

I’m still torn about what this all means for the future of the art world: Does it matter? Does it change anything? Was it all just good, clean fun? A chance to maybe score a cameo in the HBO special that resulted from the afternoon’s performance? (Hey, I’ll admit, I was there when Hova let the crowd clamber over the barricades and circle around him, cellphones held aloft. Celebrity is a hard thing to resist, no matter the pontificating after the fact.)

Will 2014 bring even more of these sort of high-profile spectacles – Lady Gaga and Jeff Koons? James Franco and everybody else? Or after this intense love affair with famous, well-known faces, will the art world go back to its corner and remain as it has always been: Weird, a bit nerdy, but still intensely cool in its own insular, unfamous way?

 

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