“The Quick and the Dead”

Walker Art Center

From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.

—The Apostles’ Creed

CONCEPTUAL ART, it could be said, gravitates toward either deductive or productive gestures. Deductive Conceptualism, as I’m calling it, concentrates on the conditions and procedures that allow artworks to be recognized as such—or, in the terms of painting talk, “the internal structure of the picture is deduced from the shape of the support,” to quote Yve-Alain Bois recapitulating Michael Fried on Frank Stella. By better understanding itself, deductive Conceptualism proposes to better understand the world. Artists such as Art & Language, Michael Asher, Andrea Fraser, Liam Gillick, Hans Haacke, Mary Kelly, and Walid Raad have made this trajectory familiar.

Such art delves into constellations of value and desire that lie submerged beneath the placid obviousness of cultural experience. Because they materialize the

to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. Please sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW and save up to 65% off the newsstand price for full online access to this issue and our archive.

Order the PRINT EDITION of the November 2009 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

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