Artvehicle 60 — Editorial

Charles Saatchi is really furious. Furious and sick to the back teeth of art collectors buying art to impress their wealthy chums when they should be buying it because they love it. Well maybe they do, probably some don't at all, possibly a few do completely, and the rest are in the middle. Perhaps some people buy Crystal Champagne because the think it tastes nicest, and stretch limos with jacuzzis in them because they have cleanliness issues. Has he asked them, a little quiz perhaps, when he sells them some Emin? Yes mate, I can do you a bit of Hirst, but first you gotta tell me, what do these dots mean? Nah, yer money's no good: not on it?s own, you?ve got to be packing a bit of critical theory if you want to do business here.

Bunch of Flash Harrys; do they come out to Venice on Ryan Air to Traveso then get the coach? No, they do not. They arrive by big boat, full of servants with a hold full of masturbatory self regard because they are trendy oligarchs and oiligarchs. No doubt by the time you read this there will also be oilgiarchs and olliggsrrchs vulgarly snatching up the bits and pieces that Charles has offloaded onto the secondary market to clear some room in his shed for the new stuff he's discovered, all on it?s way from Canada or Switzerland, soon to be the new China, or India.

The article describes not only Charles' concerns about artbuyers who don't really care about art but just want to show off but also people who go to private views to chat and his win win statment that if all the reviews you exhibition receive are positive it means it is pedestrian, that kind of thing. You can read it here:

(Art students: somewhere in this text is the title, medium and materials of your homework project. I'm working on a piece called My Dark Little Secret, an installation made from baubles and Hobnobs)

All fairly obvious and surprising only because big Mr. C so rarely does anything so uncool as this. It is a drunken text gone large. Of course everyone loves a daft rant and actually many people out in Venice mentioned the yachts, but no one really complains about the giddy round of glamour-filled socializing, from one swanky party to another to which we're not invited. And we can't even go to them: you could, Mr. Saatchi, if you wanted, but you don't feel like it. You could host one, probably do from time to time, probably wouldn't invite us either. So what was your point? Uneducated collectors? What about an early Christmas present of Blimey by Mathew Collins for those Eurotrashy, hedgefundy Hamptonites? (He's still got it though; lovely bit of copy that, pure Mad Men.)

For me the interesting bit is this:

"...For professional curators, selecting specific paintings for an exhibition is a daunting prospect, far too revealing a demonstration of their lack of what we in the trade call" an eye?

They prefer to exhibit videos, and those incomprehensible post-conceptual installations and photo-text panels, for the approval of their equally insecure and myopic peers.

This 'conceptualised' work has been regurgitated remorselessly since the 1960s, over and over and over again??

Fascinating. A fairly sweeping statement made by your 'eye' there, perhaps it got a bit of powder in it of one of those Kara Black installations and is now a bit biased. Oddly he also says that "Few people in contemporary art demonstrate much curiosity. The majority spend their days blathering on, rather than trying to work out why one artist is more interesting than another, or why one picture works and another doesn't." might make a nice photo-text panel that, praps make you more interesting than another artist too, because art is a competition after all.

What we learnt this week: Coolth is a noun meaning coolness.

Adrian Lee