PRINT November 1969

557,087: Seattle

557.087, THE SHOW WHICH Lucy Lippard has organized for the Seattle Art Museum, will be recalled generically as the first sizable (i.e. public institution) exhibition of “concept art,” but it is in fact an amalgam of non-chromatic work running a gamut from late, funky Minimal to a point at which art is replaced, literally, by literature. The show is a bellwether, consolidated enough to necessitate sifting high-grade bullshit Canal Street art-thinking from genuinely dangerous, substantial material. 557.087 (which was, incidentally, the population of Seattle in 1960; the title changes when the exhibition reaches Vancouver) deals with the idea of ideas as art (roughly quoting Joseph Kosuth, one of the more ideational and difficult artists). Unfortunately the context of exhibition bestows an unmerited exoticism on several ideas which, as with most of the lesser work, rely on the quality of

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