I recently had a Paul on the road to Damascus reverse conversion experience.
I had just visited the new, highly touted, Surrealism museum. Blah.
What began with Marcel Duchamp's Urinal for R. Mutt seemed suddenly foolish. I was back astride my horse as a suddenly deconverted Saul, deeply skeptical. As coincidence would soon clarify, my next stop was an exhibition of a certain Renaissance painter, Sebastiano, of whom I'd never heard in my provincially specialist camp as an Am Lit professor. I was wholly beguiled!
This is what I later figured out. Begin any historical analysis of Modernism with Voltaire's shriek against the Roman Catholic Church,"Ecrasez l'Infame." It became easier and easier, if illogical, to replace that hated ego suppressing institution with the closest thing handy, one's own ID.
Koon's is a puppy dog. Sick Transit Gloria Artibus: And Damien's is a shark. U.s.w. The saddest part is the way art historians and critics fell for this trash. At least the gallerists' moves are understandably venal.
The eggheads gratuitously made omelettes of their brains.
Patrick D. Hazard