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Art Worlds

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Argues that art works are not the creation of isolated individuals but result from cooperation between different artists, suppliers of materials, art distributors, critics, and audiences, who together make up the art world.


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Argues that art works are not the creation of isolated individuals but result from cooperation between different artists, suppliers of materials, art distributors, critics, and audiences, who together make up the art world.

30 review for Art Worlds

  1. 5 out of 5

    Joshua Nomen-Mutatio

    Really, really interesting stuff. I especially like the sections on "Naive Artists" (aka "outsider art"). I used the chapter "Integrated Professionals, Mavericks, Folk Artists, and Naive Artists" as the citation-foundation (Like that? I just made it up.) for a paper and subsequent interactive presentation on The Flaming Lips' parking lot and boom box experiments which segued into their tremendous four-simultaneously-played-discs album entitled Zaireeka. ( Read about it. Do it. Please. ) I've be Really, really interesting stuff. I especially like the sections on "Naive Artists" (aka "outsider art"). I used the chapter "Integrated Professionals, Mavericks, Folk Artists, and Naive Artists" as the citation-foundation (Like that? I just made it up.) for a paper and subsequent interactive presentation on The Flaming Lips' parking lot and boom box experiments which segued into their tremendous four-simultaneously-played-discs album entitled Zaireeka. ( Read about it. Do it. Please. ) I've been digging through the mass grave of my past for the last few hours. Finding books I'd forgotten about. Finding terrible "writing" scribbled upon random things while fucked up and teeming with existential angst, which I saved for some sentimental/unclear reasons. Looking at the cardboard-boxed remnants of my past with a deep wistfulness and near-nauseating, private embarrassment in tow -- they are tag-teaming my mind, working in shifts. (Look, I'm getting close to writing bloggy reviews! Yay! I'm doing it, Pa! I'm riding all by myself!) Anyway, that album is great and I have several fond memories of gathering people/boom boxes together to listen to it. My first and only and deeply-beloved/-missed cat was named after it. I miss you, Zaireeka. May you be happily sneezing on other cats in cat heaven.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Dora

    If you are interested in the artworld from a sociological perspective, this book will not disappoint you. However, from an art historical perspective, it is somewhat lacking and provides very superficial information. Although, I did like the fact that Becker did not restrict himself only to visual examples, but included examples from theater, music, dance and so on. In this sense, the book is all-inclusive and very broad in scope, but it is this broadness that, in my humble opinion, leads to a v If you are interested in the artworld from a sociological perspective, this book will not disappoint you. However, from an art historical perspective, it is somewhat lacking and provides very superficial information. Although, I did like the fact that Becker did not restrict himself only to visual examples, but included examples from theater, music, dance and so on. In this sense, the book is all-inclusive and very broad in scope, but it is this broadness that, in my humble opinion, leads to a very widely set (i.e. not precise enough) theory of the artworld/artworlds.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Titus Hjelm

    The new preface and the first chapter were pure Becker dynamite, but the rest was less inspiring. Partly perhaps because Becker spends a lot of pages in plain descriptive stuff that is not so interesting--particularly if the reader (like me) has any first-hand experience of art worlds. Nevertheless, I don't think you can bypass this book if you even think about writing something about the sociology of art.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jan D

    Its a great book and I assume it is well understandable even without being close to an “Art World”. It has Becker’s signature style of simple language and *not* mentioning theories and other works left and right. So no theory fear-of-missing-out, here. It is not hard to read although his does not reach the feeling of the sociological wonderland feel of his method-focused books for me. One needs to bring a bit patience, it is longer than outsiders and his method-books, I think, though no chapter Its a great book and I assume it is well understandable even without being close to an “Art World”. It has Becker’s signature style of simple language and *not* mentioning theories and other works left and right. So no theory fear-of-missing-out, here. It is not hard to read although his does not reach the feeling of the sociological wonderland feel of his method-focused books for me. One needs to bring a bit patience, it is longer than outsiders and his method-books, I think, though no chapter feels like it is there to increase the page count. The 25th anniversary edition includes an interview with Becker. Often, I feel that such anniversary-additions are fillers, but that one is nice, fun and explains well how Becker’s approach is different from Bourdieu’s.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Genndy

    Reading this book was like a torture. It has interesting premise, but it is exhausting to read, and not because of complex toughts, no, it is not very complex to be honest. It is exausting to read because author's style is dry and boring, and he uses tons of completely irrelevant examples while proving his point that every peace of art is a result of doings of many involved persons. Furthermore, it's thesises are not very revolutionary and most of us have probably figured them out by themselves, Reading this book was like a torture. It has interesting premise, but it is exhausting to read, and not because of complex toughts, no, it is not very complex to be honest. It is exausting to read because author's style is dry and boring, and he uses tons of completely irrelevant examples while proving his point that every peace of art is a result of doings of many involved persons. Furthermore, it's thesises are not very revolutionary and most of us have probably figured them out by themselves, just using different language. So, no great revelations here.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Timothy

    While a bit long-winded, this book provides a thorough, accessible, and informative analysis of the networks and collective actions that go into the establishment of works of art. I'm not knowledgeable about either sociology or art history, but I found this to be straightforward and appealing.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Senara

    J'ai mis un peu de temps à le terminer. Autant les premiers chapitres m'avaient passionné, autant les derniers, j'ai galéré à m'y intéresser et à les lire.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Inês

    This book was actually good. It taught me a lot about art!!!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Anne Stevens

    Exceedingly readable and fascinating, Howard Becker's Art Worlds begins with the simple premise that all works of art are collective actions. By approaching works of literature, music, and visual art as products of collective activity rather than solitary genius, Becker highlights the "complexity of the cooperative networks through which art happens" (1). Individual chapters explore issues such as the role of critics and editors, naive and folk art, the distinction between art and craft, and the Exceedingly readable and fascinating, Howard Becker's Art Worlds begins with the simple premise that all works of art are collective actions. By approaching works of literature, music, and visual art as products of collective activity rather than solitary genius, Becker highlights the "complexity of the cooperative networks through which art happens" (1). Individual chapters explore issues such as the role of critics and editors, naive and folk art, the distinction between art and craft, and the sociological dimension of artistic reputation. The epilogue to the 25th anniversary edition contains an interview where Becker explains the difference between his idea of collaborative art worlds and Pierre Bourdieu's notion of fields (champs) as spaces of competition.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Alex Song

    I really wanted to like this book. Some parts could have used more word economy. Other parts could have been flushed out more. As others have mentioned, the part on maverick and naive artists was great. The book does assume some prior subject matter knowledge, hence I actually think I need to read more on the subject matter. May come back at later date.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Stephen Baird

    I was applying for a PhD studying the impact of public art as a cooperative function of society in 18th and 19th France and walked into Waterstones in Newcastle where I found this book and a few others which were directly relevant to what I would possibly be writing on. Unfortunately I didn't get accepted for the Phd, but fortunately I got the chance to read this book.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Allison Keilman

    Very readable. Definitely would be good for those who do not already work/participate in the art world and would like to gain greater insight. For those of us already involved with the art world, it is still a decent read - very detailed and methodical.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jesper Balslev

    Kunstverdener producerer kunst, ikke kunstnerne. Fantastisk katalog over alle de forhold der er med til at forme kunstværket, som intet har med kunstneren eller hans/huns intentioner at gøre. Advarsel! Du skal ikke læse bogen hvis du er genidyrker eller holder meget af dit romanstiske kunstsyn.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Snooks McDermott

    Interesting. A bit dense in spots.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Rachel Nickens

    Great ideas; easy to read.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Barry

    My review of this book can be read at http://www.thenation.com/doc/20081201/schwabsky. My review of this book can be read at http://www.thenation.com/doc/20081201/schwabsky.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    A great book in the canon of work on creativity and the research of art worlds.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Pei-Yao

    Interesting and easy to read. I really have fun reading it!

  19. 5 out of 5

    morbidflight

    Second time reading it, but still a good read.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Whitaker

    A really great book shows us how everything is great and worth to die for

  21. 4 out of 5

    Julie

  22. 5 out of 5

    Instant Rada

  23. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

  24. 4 out of 5

    Deanna

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jane Yu

  26. 5 out of 5

    Sigmunda Assisi

  27. 4 out of 5

    pinenutsandrice

  28. 4 out of 5

    Corinne

  29. 4 out of 5

    yizhou

  30. 4 out of 5

    Misagh NG

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