Your explanation works for me. Bishop's essay seems very tautological. It goes something like this:
Art recognized as worthy by the mainstream art world (a "world" implicitly and vaguely understood by the readers of artForum) is worthy by definition.
The mainstream art world has not recognized a lot of this work (which work? can't say, it's not recognized) as worthy art.
So let's take a crack at exploring what's wrong with this work.
I am reminded of one of Debord's descriptions of the spectacle: "[The spectacle] says, 'that which appears is good, that which is good appears.'"
Actually, what's "wrong" with the work (digital work? new media work? can't say, the distinction is not recognized) is that it foregrounds and problematizes the theoretical criteria that artForum has historically relied upon to recognize worthy art.
Once we are sufficiently able to recognize its worth, we will send experts out to properly recuperate it, and we will inform you of its (theoretical, historical, philosophical, market) value. We might even hire one of you to writ the essay!
On Sep 4, 2012, at 9:03 AM, Nathaniel Stern wrote:
> The one point I keep coming back to when I read and re-read Bishop's article is that perhaps the question is not in what digital artists have mostly failed to produce, but in what mainstream theorists and critics have mostly failed to engage with/in their work.