CAA News Today

News from the Art and Academic Worlds

posted by Christopher Howard — May 22, 2013

Each week CAA News publishes summaries of eight articles, published around the web, that CAA members may find interesting and useful in their professional and creative lives.

What’s the Point of Art School?

As changes to the school curriculum and university funding undermine the arts education system, industry experts gathered at Central Saint Martin’s art school to discuss what the future holds for the field. Are you studying creative arts or design? Share an image or video that captures why you love art school. (Read more in the Guardian.)

It’s Time to Rethink and Expand Art History for the Digital Age

Continuing a conversation on Getty Voices about rethinking art history, the art historian Nuria Rodríguez Ortega, a recent participant in the Digital Art History Lab, argues that we must reestablish digital art history on a new ground, both adapting the field to the new web landscape and broadening its scope to include the full spectrum of human attempts to make meaning of art. (Read more in the Getty Iris.)

To Profit or Not? How Art Galleries Make Money in Chicago, and Why Some Choose Not To

More than once I have heard a Chicago art dealer joke that their commercial gallery is really a not-for-profit because, well, their business makes no profit. Despite that appraisal, nonprofit fundraising techniques are finding their way into the business models of some for-profit startups. Traditionally, commercial galleries have been run as shops that sell products with negotiable price tags. Now, some are experimenting with fundraising and sponsorships as strategies for growth. Oppositely, a couple of nonprofit art organizations are incorporating commercial aspects into their practices, such as selling art and organizing an art fair. (Read more in the New City.)

Andy Warhol and His Foundation: The Questions

After Andy Warhol died in 1987, his will directed that a foundation should be set up in his name, funded with proceeds from the sale of some 95,000 pictures, prints, sculptures, drawings, and photographs left in his estate. As well as creating and endowing the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts provides financial support to artists and scholars, galleries, publications, and educational projects. Warhol’s bequest made no provision for the authentication of his artwork. But in 1994 the foundation initiated work on a multivolume catalogue raisonné of Warhol’s art, in part because the project would “contribute to the stabilization of the market for Warhol works over time, thus having a direct benefit to the Foundation’s longterm goal of converting its Warhol works to cash at favorable prices.” (Read more in the New York Review of Books.)

The New Rules of Engagement

Predictably, the recession uncovered fundamental operational and structural weaknesses in American higher education. Few institutions managed to be as nimble as they should have been in responding to the depressed economy. Even fewer presidents had the courage to call on their boards of trustees to think strategically, make bold plans, innovate, and invest. The harsh truth is that the culture into which “change” presidents are placed commonly accepts limited programmatic innovation, except when it emerges from the faculty, and is intolerant of structural innovation. The culprits are not usually the faculty. (Read more in Academe.)

The Neoliberal Assault on Academia

Lost amid the fetishization of information technology and the pathos of the struggle over proper working conditions for adjunct faculty is the deeper crisis of the academic profession occasioned by neoliberalism. This crisis is connected to the economics of higher education but it is not primarily about that. The neoliberal sacking of the universities runs much deeper than tuition fee hikes and budget cuts. (Read more in Al Jazeera.)

Career Services Must Die

Well, not die, exactly. Transform. “The term ‘career services’ has been a phrase that has been used for several decades to describe what colleges have been doing,” says Andy Chan, vice president for personal and career development at Wake Forest University. “It’s not working.” Chan coedited the new report, A Roadmap for Transforming the College-to-Career Experience. (Read more at Inside Higher Ed.)

The Library’s Future Is Not an Open Book

Talk about imposing: the ceremonial stone stair leading to bronze gates and carved doors; the frieze of inspiring names; and the vaulted hall that seems the very definition of hallowed. And the books, bound portals opening to anywhere imaginable, available to all comers. In cities across the United States, the central public library came into being when the country was young and striving to impress. Architecturally grand, the central library was both beacon and monumental tribute to learning and civic pride; a people’s palace with knowledge freely available to all. But, really, when was the last time you spent any time there? (Read more in the Wall Street Journal.)

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