Are Basquiat's Brooklyn Notebooks and Kahlo's Painful Detroit Experience of Any Artistic Value?

April 7, 2015 7:00 PM

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I believe that Diego Rivera's and Frida Kahlo's frescoes, currently at the Detroit Institute of Arts and Jean Michel Basquiat; The Unknown Notebooks, currently at the Brooklyn Museum since last Friday, are examples of a curatorial trend in which the life of the artists is transformed into the source of artistic value of the art displayed. This, of course, diverts the focus from the art object to those things that, allegedly, inspired those works of art. This means that we are looking at the art of the past with the spectacles we use to justify art fair prices these days.

A couple of years ago in Art Basel, I asked a very important collector about his favorite artist. He mentioned an Asian artist whose name I do not remember. He builds barges with the wood recovered from wrecked fishing boats found in the shores of the Pacific island where he comes from. So, in his c...

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