Ikaw Na, Ikaw Na ang Nagbabasa ng Foucault

10 Jul 2010 (Sat) at 2:01 pm 3 comments

Christina Dy's Lover Lay Down

Beware of these rope drawings—they reek of CAPITALISMMMM!!!

Consumer Lay Down
Angelo V. Suarez
2010
Review of Christina Dy’s [lover lay down]
Blanc Gallery Makati, Blanc Compound Mandaluyong and Silverlens Lab

In a lengthy review of Christina Dy‘s new 3-venue drawing show, writer-artist/e Angelo Suarez belabors a simple point: gallery shows are commercialized.

Sure, he rails about art economy and how commerce simultaneously impedes and allows viewers to experience art. But hey, the world has been in a capitalist system for hundreds of years, isn’t that stating the obvious? “The art world is commercialized!” Oh no! Really? How could we have not noticed? Gasp.

Despite the lack of fresh insight, the piece—wittily and appropriately titled Consumer Lay Down, in all fairness—is written with much self-consciousness and arrogance. The 1,700-word piece is sprinkled with his stylized contractions like “w/,” “w/c,” “&,” “1st,” “connexion” and “thruout,” as well as a plethora of quotes from famous, if not fashionable theorists like Slavoj Žižek and Michel Foucault (to whom he refers only by their last names, as if saying to readers, “if you don’t know who I’m referring to, well well well, you’re dumb. Mwahahaha.”) Suarez maximizes the use of sexual/fetish terms and references throughout (“striptease,” Discipline and Punish, etc) to make his argumentation seem less elementary and more particular to Dy’s show.

w/ no outright nudes in the exhibition, [lover lay down] appears not so much as a total exposure of these relations but as a striptease (the images being still, the act of undressing is always in suspension… never in full exposure but in anticipation of it)—a revelation whose partialness is partial to furthering business rather than curb it. The statement implied by every drawing: ‘If I’ve drawn you in, if you really want me, if I turn you on—buy me. Lay down, consumer.’ It’s the purchase that finally gives the audience license to touch the artwork, the sale that gives intimacy completion.

So the sex-themed drawings are for sale. Mmm. Insightful.

Suarez’s concluding statement goes: “Christina Dy’s [lover lay down] is an exhibition not only of drawings… but an exhibition of the structural violence that is present in any exhibition to occur w/in the capitalist paradigm…” Can’t one say that for every show mounted in a commercial gallery?

One wonders why Suarez had to quote all these people just to say that art is (godforbid!) a business. To appear more erudite and academic? To make his arguments seem more valid? To make his review seem more “discursive”? To flaunt his intellect–or his Žižek collection? To assert his superiority over us all? Perhaps, all of the above.#

*image swiped from the SLab newsletter

Entry filed under: Art, Edgar Allan Paule, Writings. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , .

Isang Binti Ka Lang, China! A Dream Goes On Forever

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. critic after jizz  |  10 Jul 2010 (Sat) at 3:46 pm

    nyahaha nice

  • 2. AD!  |  20 Sep 2010 (Mon) at 4:12 pm

    if there can be more juicier than a punch and kick on the right leg, this is, of all criticisms of a criticism that i have read over the Philippine soil, the most demystifying of all. congrats edgar! natuwa naman si angelo (via facebook) sa naisulat mo dito. ^_^

  • 3. Mariah  |  12 Apr 2012 (Thu) at 9:53 am

    But most of the artists would refuse to accept such critique–that they are commercialized, sell-outs and reactionary! To point out such unconscious participation in exacerbating the crisis of capitalism through art is something unimaginable to happen for an artist. However, I would love to hear your critique of artists who are proclaiming their resistance from being co-opted by capitalism and yet they resist from participating, and supporting any leftist social movement! That at the end of their agony and plaintive cry from seeing the oppression of the working class, they go home with their airconditioner, they order starbucks coffee and they opt to stay at home, watch the rallies and click some fanpage in support of the causes of the left. Too much hypocrisy is going on!

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