Los Angeles

Sam Durant

Blum & Poe | Los Angeles

Previously Sam Durant has satirically exploited the disjunction between the redemptive aspirations of modern art and design and the actual needs and wants of a public that has generally favored the nostalgic promises of pop over the rigors of “the new.” Beyond Greenberg’s assertion of a golden umbilicus binding even the grungiest bohemia to an elite patron class, questions of audience tend to constitute a willful blind spot at the very core of modernist ideology. As Durant has shown, the problem stems from the artist’s own inherently fractured self-image: Rejecting one’s (typically) middle-class roots, he or she yo-yos between the upper- and lowermost tiers of society. The persona of the resentful beerguzzling handyman that he assumed early on was hardly a stretch; bad-mouthing the client and the job is a strategy for psychic self-preservation that artists know well.

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