In his letter in your September issue responding to my article on British art (Artforum, April 1977), Martin Ackerman described me as a “critic who puts politics first and foremost.” In fact, I attempt through my writing to bear witness to events and works of art as truthfully as I can. It is a pity that Ackerman does not do the same.

The view that there is a crisis in British art, and that the visual artist here has lost the social purpose which he once possessed as a professional serving the middle classes is far from being “leftist political nonsense.” It is shared by the majority of London art critics, many artists, and is widely held among the general public by those on the right, the left, and the center of the political spectrum. For example, the television commentator Fyfe Robertson recently made a documentary about modern art in Britain which graphically described its crisis from

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