PRINT December 2004


New York

THERE WAS A KIND OF INTELLIGENCE IN THE WAY 2003 BLACKED out midstream. Some things thrive better in darkness; some things go to sleep. But this year was halogen lit, smooth as safety glass, and punctuated by ever-peaking terror alerts, no doubt manufactured by the Bush people in anticipation of their show of force at Madison Square Garden. The year may go down as the most managed in the history of New York, the year that so many potential and imaginary explosions were defused or diverted, the year that the wartime climate served as a consistent and dependable stabilizing device. It’s tempting to consider all the ways that 2004 almost happened, or could have happened, yet didn’t. But whether it did or not, the year had a certain managerial logic, a logic that applied to daily life as well as to cultural production, guiding the movement of money, people, and art into and out of New York.

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