ELEANOR HEARTNEY is a New York-based art critic and the author of numerous books about contemporary art.
OCT 2017 | Art
Andres Serrano gained international fame—or some would say notoriety—in 1989 when his photograph Piss Christ became embroiled in the battle to defund the NEA. Over the years Piss Christ has continued to ignite controversy and is periodically attacked and defaced when it is publically exhibited. Meanwhile, Serrano has continued to create beautfully crafted, provocative photographs that touch on such themes as faith, sex, death, homelessness, race and bigotry.
DEC 16-JAN 17 | Art
The fantasy of art objects having lives of their own has a long history, encompassing everything from the story of Pygmalion to the Hollywood franchise Night at the Museum. Painter Russell Connor has made a career of speculating about what characters from various iconic art historical masterpieces might do if allowed to mingle and interact.
NOV 2015 | Critics Page
The 1970s saw the simultaneous emergence of environmentalism and feminism as important social forces. At the time, it was obvious to many observers that the two movements were related.
JUL-AUG 2012 | ArtSeen
Newness was at the core of modernismHarold Rosenberg extolled the Tradition of the New and Robert Hughes explored The Shock of the New. In 1936 Alfred Barr theorized the emergence of the New with a complicated engineering-style diagram that illustrated his theory that art evolves through a process of exhaustion and reaction.
DEC 11-JAN 12 | Art
On a stage above the audiences eye level, men in white shirts murmur discreetly to each other as they page through dusty folios. They rummage through old books strewn on a long table, piled on the floor and stashed haphazardly on shelves.
NOV 2016 | Critics Page
Like most people in this august profession, I stumbled into art criticism in the early 1980s through a slew of unlikely meetings. Following my failure to secure a “real” art job with my newly minted MA in art history, I found my home as an art writer through a series of encounters with remarkable individuals.
JUL-AUG 2015 | Critics Page
I can’t think of an essay that has been more influential on my thinking than Linda Nochlin’s seminal (if we may use that term in this context) “Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists?”
AD REINHARDT | Ad and Spirituality
The convergence of the death of Arthur Danto, the invitation to write something for the Rail on the 100th anniversary of Ad Reinhardts birth, and the first anniversary of Superstorm Sandy has set me thinking about Ends.
DEC 12-JAN 13 | ArtSeen
In old movies, I’ve noticed that the critic is always a snooty older white manincredibly well connected, frequently corrupt, wielding enormous power over fate of artist, and very often graced with an upper-class British accent.