Synopses & Reviews
This groundbreaking exploration of appropriation and institutional critique assembles a wide variety of artists and mediums to offer new insight and make unprecedented connections. Exploring two parallel strands of post-conceptual art, Take It or Leave It highlights artists known for their use of appropriation and those who engage in "institutional critique." Focusing on American artists who emerged from the late 1970s to the early 1990s, the book highlights dynamic practices in a variety of media: from performance to photography; video to installation; painting to writing. Artists as wide-ranging in approach as Dara Birnbaum, Mark Dion, Robert Gober, Barbara Kruger, Zoe Leonard, Glenn Ligon, Adrian Piper, Stephen Prina, and Fred Wilson are examined within the context of the larger culture--from the political landscape to design strategies in advertising. Essays by curators Anne Ellegood and Johanna Burton as well as scholars George Baker, Julia Bryan-Wilson, Gavin Butt, and Darby English explore the historical and current terrain of appropriation and institutional critique, while pursuing topics including the downtown music scene in New York in the '80s, new strategies of painting, and theories of race after identity politics' heyday.