Washington D.C.

“Metaphor: New Projects By Contemporary Sculptors”

Various Venues

Wait a minute. . . . Isn’t there a confusion, evident in attempts to theorize Postmodernism, between the aims of Modernism and those of late-Modernist Formalism? Aren’t the two being viewed as synonymous, thus telescoping a century’s achievements into those of decades, and reducing “form” to its most restricted definition? And isn’t there a difference between Formalist “self-reference” and Modernist “abstraction,” as the latter was primed by poetry, influenced by linguistics and apprised by examples from other self-defining fields? In Modernism, research into the components of a medium was to yield art’s “language,” allowing it to refer to the world through its own inherent mechanisms, as a system of interrelated parts. By this logic, form world and real world existed in a parallel relation, the one autonomous yet analogous to the other. And by this logic even a still life might have as

to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.