Two years ago, in an interview with the Brooklyn Rail, the well-known performance artist Ulay talked about how the art of the 1960s and 70s had been a crucial opportunity for altering the definition of what art is, but had failed. During this time, Ulay, as well as contemporaries like Allan Kaprow and Fluxus, began to create work that embraced impermanence and eliminated the distinction between artist and viewer. This type of art had tremendous potential to change, or even obliterate, the art market, as well as the current model for exhibitions; creating the potential for us all to emerge as artists -- our lives, interactions, and creations seen as fine art, in whatever form they embodied.
More than 50 years later, the men and women who control the fine art market continue to push against the hierarchy that divides artists and their audiences. This week, I found myself being sucked into this very concept. I had been invited to an event, passed on to me by a local curator, to see "an interesting iPhone app/art piece." Huh? Since when do curators see iPhone apps as art? Obviously, I needed to investigate.