Pirates and Farmers
Essays on Taste
- Essays by one of the most astute art critics of the past 50 years, on subjects such as the art biennale, academia, formalism, artistic quality and the power of influence
- Dave Hickey rails against the absurdities of the art world in a book that is just as relevant today as it was on publication 10 years ago
- A writer with a cult following, Hickey died in 2021
“As an art critic, [Hickey] doesn’t do what most people want from art criticism. He doesn’t provide his readers with a neat intellectual framework through which to view everything they see, like a Clement Greenberg or a Michael Fried, and he doesn’t really do beautiful description either … Instead, Hickey gives you intricately structured argument and gorgeous prose … Reading him you want to forget that the art market is a game of Hungry Hungry Hippos between Ukrainian oligarchs and Qatari princesses … You want to be the thing you advocate; you want to ride the wave, mount the dais, and speak the truth.” – Los Angeles Review of Books
Arguably one of the most astute critics working today, Dave Hickey’s multi-decade career as a leading cultural commentator is characterised by his blend of high and mass culture and his fervent critique of the celebrity-driven culture of the 21st-century art world. Following his 2012 announcement of self-imposed exile from art criticism, this new body of essays once again questions and challenges the cultural status quo.
With his trademark humour, Hickey has declared that: ‘I miss being an elitist and not having to talk to idiots’ in a field that, he believes, is defined by the commoditisation of art and the self-referential tendencies of criticism itself. This new body of shorter essays by the author of Air Guitar: Essays on Art & Democracy and The Invisible Dragon: Four Essays on Beauty looks at more contemporary phenomena: super-collectors, the trope of the biennale and the loss of looking.
- 24th Jan 2022
- Paperback / softback
- World excluding USA & Canada
- 226 mm x 150 mm
- 190 Pages
- 15 color