PRINT October 2001



TO SPEAK OF “ART SINCE 1960” is familiar enough, but the period thus delineated is certainly no seamless continuum. Hal Foster, who calls it the “neo-avant-garde,” uses the Freudian notion of deferred action to relate it to the radical provocations of the early-century European avant-garde. But it may be more accurate to say—twisting Foster’s model a bit—that the ’60s themselves mark the trauma to which artists of the past few decades have mostly responded, alternately returning to its theories and practices and recoiling from them. Perhaps the ’60s appear all the more strange today since, sans the heavy filters of the now-moribund polemics of modernism versus postmodernism, they face us more squarely. And yet despite (or because of) this fact, our view has dollied back significantly—although still the subject of a massive amount of writing, the ’60s tend now to be probed by young art

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