Date of Award
Master of Arts
When a survey of contemporary painting is done, the lack of stylistic unification is striking. Using an analogy that compares that contemporary moment of painting to the mannerism that followed the Renaissance, this thesis attempts to define the current terrain o f painting as rejecting the rhetoric o f necessity that surrounded modernism and accepting painting as gratuitous. The plausibility of these claims can be seen in the type of work featured in major exhibitions. The potential problems of a period like this— particularly, a decline into pastiche or cynicism—and how to avoid them can be seen in painters whose work features self-critical rigour. Defining the current moment in painting provides a context for what it might mean to develop a painting practice in a period that that lacks medium-defined goals.
Williams, Robert, "“We Are What We Pretend To Be:” Making the Case for Contemporary Painting as Gratuitous" (2011). Digitized Theses. 3238.