To the Editor:

For those who crave cultural distraction without the heavy intellectual price tag, now comes a pack of new and inscrutable art collectives offering colorful, guilt-free fun. Forcefield, Dearraindrop, Paper Rad, Gelatin, the Royal Art Lodge, hobbypopMUSEUM: Their names flicker impishly across the otherwise dull screen of the contemporary art world, invoking the loopy cheer of techno music and its nostalgia for a make-believe 1960s epitomized by LSD, free love, and Day-Glo—but not civil rights, feminism, or SDS. Yes, artists’ groups are hot. Or so chime the harbingers of art-world value production as its symbol-producing machinery gears up to meet a still-speculative demand. As Alison M. Gingeras tells us in her feature on hobbypopMUSEUM [Openings, March 2004], this new collectivity is not at all solemn; it is “insouciant.” It eschews the “sociopolitical

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