The Way We Do Art Now and Other Sacred Tales

John Baldessari

1973 | 00:29:00 | United States | English | B&W | Mono | 4:3 | 1/2" open reel video

Collection: Early Video Art, Single Titles

Tags: Conceptual Art, Humor, Performance, Video History

“A spoof on current art attitudes [that] stretches the definition of what can be considered art. Because the late 1960s and early 1970s were periods of innovation, using the human body as art, making process equivalent to product... [etc.], Baldessari questions that very sense of originality and exploration by taking it to its (rather mundane) limits. By taping a stick at one end, then picking it up at the other, he is both questioning and spoofing what constitutes art.” —Marcia Tucker, “John Baldessari: Pursuing the Unpredictable,” John Baldessari (New York: New Museum, 1981)

This title was in the original Castelli-Sonnabend video art collection.

This video contains the following short episodes

  • Delivering a speech to imaginary persons in different spaces in a room
  • Some words I mispronounce*
  • You tell what I do*
  • Anna ra[i]ses animals she has never seen
  • Taping a stick: lifting it from the other end*
  • No Dice (A Story)
  • Untitled [kicking bottle]
  • Talking with one knee to another
  • Examining three 8D common size 2 1/2 inch nails: how they are the same: how they are different*
  • What follows is what he liked to do best*
  • For Sylvia Plath
  • A riddle
  • Insincerely promising a cat a carrot*
  • A sentence with hidden meaning*
  • For Marcel Proust
  • Close-Up
  • Untitled [description of a stool]*
  • It is cruel to put a dog on a mirror
  • The Way We Do Art Now (The Birth of Abstract Art)

*Starred episodes are contained in the full length version of the title (28 min.) and also repeated on a 9 min. excerpt reel which is included on this DVD.

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