From the Archives: Interview with Photographer Chris Buck (1996)

Snapshots of a Pop Obsessive By Scott Woods (originally published in, 1996) Pop photographer Chris Buck has kept me entertained for the better part of ten years now with stories of his professional encounters and other work-and-music-related musings. On a recent roundtrip to Toronto from New York, Chris agreed to chat with me, live, on tape, about his trade, his passions, his techniques, his … Continue reading From the Archives: Interview with Photographer Chris Buck (1996)

Art critics, art books

Who are the best art critics and what are the best books of art criticism? Here are some of the books I own: Robert Hughes, Nothing if Not Critical – The sort of critical anthology I’m currently most interested in (it contains reprints of Hughes’s reviews across several years at Time magazine). Hughes is devastating when he goes in for the kill (Julian Schnabel—ouch!), and … Continue reading Art critics, art books

Leee Black Childers

“During the early 1970s, he focused on his stage-management of Andy Warhol’s 1971 London stage production, Pork at Camden’s Roundhouse, Childers recorded the legacy of a theatrical cross over between rock music and gay culture. In 2012 he released a book titled Drag Queens, Rent Boys, Pick Pockets, Junkies, Rockstars and Punks. It featured images of Debbie Harry, Wayne County and Jackie Curtis, as well … Continue reading Leee Black Childers

There Goes (Another) Norman

“My tipping point regarding Rockwell had come in conversation with Willem de Kooning. Our greatest modern painter quite adored Rockwell—as he did most things about the United States since arriving here, as a twenty-two-year-old Dutch stowaway, in 1926. (He reminisced, ‘My Communist friends in Greenwich Village said America is a lousy country. I told them they were nuts.’) De Kooning emboldened me to write something … Continue reading There Goes (Another) Norman

Arthur C. Danto

“If there was nothing visible in Warhol’s sculpture to distinguish it from an ordinary object, Mr. Danto wondered, what made it art? At a time when more and more artists were creating works lacking traditional artistic qualities, this was an urgent question. “Leaving aside that Warhol’s sculpture was made of silk-screened plywood, not cardboard, the defining feature of the sculptural ‘Brillo Box’ was, in Mr. … Continue reading Arthur C. Danto

The Heartbreak of Crazy Hormones

Well, I don’t listen to [gangsta rap] a lot, because my car speakers aren’t big enough, but I do listen to it, because I love it when people redeem the vernacular. I love the prosody — those physical, classical cadences. Jesus, I heard something the other day and the weighted syllables just marched along. They were positively Virgilian—like Latin hexameters, you know. Bang! Bang! Bang! … Continue reading The Heartbreak of Crazy Hormones

Through With Buzz

Since about 1970, serious contemporary artists, art critics, and curators have done their damnedest to quarantine the word ‘beauty’ from inclusion in any discussion of art. Instead, borrowing heavily from critical theory, they’ve larded their talk about art with such academically saturated fats as ‘dialogues,’ ‘hybridization,’ ‘critical practice,’ ‘semiotics,’ ‘dialectics,’ ‘synthesis,’ ‘political discourse,’ and others too enervating to mention. With Invisible Dragon and Air Guitar, … Continue reading Through With Buzz

Richard Hamilton

Bryan Ferry on the recently deceased Richard Hamilton, one of the founders of “pop”: I was fortunate to be taught by Richard Hamilton in 1964, my first year at the fine art department of Newcastle University. From then on Richard was a great inspiration, both as an artist, and as a personality. Frighteningly intellectual, he seemed to validate my romantic leanings towards American culture and … Continue reading Richard Hamilton