The last few decades have seen a complete untethering of what art can be, who makes it and where it can be found, which has been matched by a reassessment of art’s appropriate place in society and the financial value that should be attached to it. This survey of the dynamic developments in art worldwide since 1989 goes in search of those artists who have shaped a new visual vocabulary and whose work reflects on these turbulent years.
Kelly Grovier examines the key themes in contemporary art, from portraiture in the age of face transplants and facial recognition software, to political activism, science and religion. Artists discussed include Jeff Koons, Louise Bourgeois, Damien Hirst, George Condo, Marlene Dumas, Sean Scully, Cindy Sherman, Banksy, Ai Weiwei, Antony Gormley, Christo and Jean-Claude, Jenny Holzer, Chuck Close and Cornelia Parker.
The final chapter, a timeline, traces the evolution of art practice in this period by looking closely at one key artwork from each year.
Kelly Grovier is a brilliant new voice whose writing conveys the excitement, relevance and universality of contemporary art. This book is essential reading for all students of contemporary art and art history, as well as anyone with an interest in contemporary visual culture.
'Essential reading, with clear signposting and sparkling prose'
Times Literary Supplement