Edited by M.A. Corzo

Conservation image

Which objects or events will define the art of our time? Who will decide what is to be preserved for posterity and how to preserve it? If an artist chooses ephemeral materials, should the work be allowed to deteriorate?

These are among the questions posed in this stimulating volume, based on a GCI conference on the preservation of contemporary art held at the Getty Center in March 1998. Professionals from a range of disciplines—artists, museum directors, curators, conservators, art historians, dealers, collectors, and scientists, as well as a philosopher and a lawyer—offer their individual perspectives on the artist's original intent, the effect of the art market, ways to cope with rapidly evolving media technologies, and fine art as popular culture.

Authors include celebrated artists David Hockney, Judy Chicago, and Bill Viola; philosopher Arthur Danto; collectors Clifford Einstein and Agnes Gund; and museum professionals Roy A. Perry, head of conservation at the Tate Gallery, London; James Coddington, chief conservator at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Peter Galassi, chief curator of photography at the Museum of Modern Art; and John Hanhardt, senior curator of film and media arts at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York. The foreword is by Mildred Constantine, formerly a curator at the Museum of Modern Art.

The 34 essays in this handsome volume, illustrated with more than 80 color photographs, center on the following topics: "Is Contemporary Art Only for Contemporary Times?," "Present and Future Perceptions," "The Challenge of Materials," "The Art Ecosystem," and "Who Is Responsible?" Museum professionals, dealers, collectors, conservators, artists, art historians, and all those engaged in the dialogue surrounding art and cultural heritage will find this timely volume of critical interest.

Miguel Angel Corzo is former director of the Getty Conservation Institute.

212 pages, 10-1/2 x 11 inches
80 color and 11 b/w illustrations
ISBN 0-89236-528-5, paper, $39.95

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