New Book by AICA-USA Member Brett Levine

AICA-USA member Brett Levine's new book Curatorial Intervention: History and Current Practices explores the myriad ways in and through which curators mediate the artist-audience exchange. In particular, Levine explores how curatorial transparency, agency, and power can recontextualize and reposition artworks prior to their being experienced by audiences—often with viewers none the wiser.

Focusing on contemporary curatorial practice, this work critically examines the ways in which curators impact artists’ intentionality, and how this alters audiences’ experiences of reception. Through discussions with leading artists, curators, and arts administrators, Levine posits a new paradigm for defining and contextualizing curating, while exploring how the former dialectic intention/reception is today superseded by the triad intention/intervention/reception. After situating the more traditional artist-audience relationship, he explores how extant theories of the art experience fail to either provide for considerations of curatorial practice or contextualize its operations.

Levine writes,

"The overarching question is not if curators have agency within the artist–audience exchange but rather if their mediations in advance of experience should be visible to the absent audience member. These mediations, as Boris Groys explains, problematize the artist–audience exchange to such a degree that audiences, as viewers, are compelled to evaluate which experiential frame they wish to operate within—a mediated curatorial frame or an unmediated creative frame. In many ways, curatorial intervention emphasizes if and, if so, how a spectator or the spectator (think, the ideal spectator) experiences a work of art, rather than how every individual subjectively encounters works—and questions how the specific experience is mediated. This query forms the foundation of intervention theory." (p. 1-2)

AICA supports art writers around the world through public programs and membership that includes free access to museums across the globe. Since its formation in 1950, AICA has been committed to elevating the values of art criticism as a discipline, and acting on behalf of the physical and moral defense of works of art.
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AICA supports arts writers around the world through public programs and membership that offers free access to museums across the globe. AICA-USA represents the largest national section of AICA International with over 450 distinguished critics, curators, scholars, and art historians working throughout the United States. As part of the international organization, we benefit from a global reach in presence. AICA-USA is intent on international communication, elevating the values of art criticism as a discipline, and acting on behalf of the physical and moral defense of works of art.

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AICA's membership card is recognized for entrance to museums around the world. Members are invited to attend the annual AICA International Congress, hosted each year by a different member nation, and the AICA-USA annual meeting, which is held every year in May.

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Organized in collaboration with CUE Art Foundation, this program matches emerging critics with experienced AICA-USA members who guide them through the process of writing a catalogue essay.

A partnership between The Andy Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant and AICA-USA that gives art writers the opportunity to strengthen their work through one-on-one consultations with leading art critics.

Every fall, in cooperation with the New School's Vera List Center for Art and Politics, AICA-USA presents a Distinguished Critic Lecture.

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