Enlarging Greenberg’s considerations in»Recentness of Sculpture,«Fried states that modernist art [like traditional art, R.P.] would»defeat or suspend its own. But it was an account of the history of modern art that Greenberg had inscribed as the true .. Clement Greenberg, “Recentness of Sculpture,”. , rpt. in. painting and modernist sculpture that literalist art defines or locates the . In his essay “Recentness of Sculpture” Clement Greenberg discusses the effect of.

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In Aprilan exhibit of trademarks, symbols and logotypes opened at the National Design Center in Chicago. This set of events—a retrospective display in Chicago examining the triumph, over the preceding 20 years, of a graphic design style; and a cluster of sculprure art exhibits in New York galleries advancing a new manner of art-object making—seem very different in terms of place and intent. The cases of the recentenss just mentioned reflect the development in their work of a material and compositional syntax whose programmatic application bears some striking resemblances to the practices and principles of corporate graphic design, especially the design of corporate identity programs.

The importance of these design principles as reflectors of social values is that they are seen by both the corporate designers and the artists I shall discuss as manifestations of distinct and clearly defined attitudes toward what art is, attitudes which while strongly different and at times mutually exclusive reflect a common faith in the efficacy of form as a means of restructuring society through public exposure to works executed within particular systems of use.

The notion that a kind of symbolic investiture is implicit within the Minimalist object is not new to art criticism. The stacks vary from five to 10 units, but their boxes are modular in two sizes, always measuring either 9 by 40 by 31 inches, or 6 by 27 by Intervals between them are 9 inches and 6 inches respectively for the large and small stacks.

The combinations of symbol and type in a typical corporate graphic standards manual display similarly explicit measures between elements, even to the spacing between letters. Control of the ggeenberg surrounding the logotype becomes an active element in the total display.

Archive Journeys: Reise | Art Movements, Art world reactions | Tate

Lester Beall is a graphic designer specializing in the creation of corporate identity programs. It reads in part:. This requirement underscores the difficulties encountered in designing a trademark that is a mark of individuality, while at the same time having the qualities of universal application… Any graphic device, no matter how well designed, cannot alone project an all-over positive image unless it is an integral part of the usage system.

This system, or the organization and coordination of all usage areas, functions as an integrating synthesizer and is therefore an acutely essential factor in the development and growth of a corporate identity.

Introduction to Minimal Art

However, in the development of a corporate design program a paradoxical phenomenon is often exposed. Instead the individual as a sensory perceptive apparatus faces erasure. In the February issue of Artforum, Morris notes:. Belief in this sense is both a kind of faith in spatial extension and a visualization of the extension… neither the theories nor the experiences of gestalt effects relating to three-dimensional bodies are as simple and clear as they are for two-dimensions.


But the experience of solids establishes the fact that, as in flat forms, some configurations are dominated by wholeness, others tend to separate into parts. I believe that the particularity to which Morris refers exemplifies his recognition that the art gallery space itself is a context within which given works of art function as elements, and that different placements or arrangements of forms maintain or destroy the aesthetic viability of that context.

How does the gestalt of a given configuration become shaped to a particular aesthetic intent by its location in a particular place? That depends upon the values accorded that place. It is necessary to remember that the growth of enormous, multinational corporations proceeded almost unnoticed by the general public up to the early s, although certain artists and intellectuals had become increasingly aware of some of the more disruptive symptoms of this phenomenon, if not of the causes behind it.

Behind the day-to-day affairs of the marketplace there was a real change in the way corporations were structured in this country during the s. Part of the means for increasing industrial production in the U. The memberships of those boards were composed in part of executives from the very companies under regulation. This sort of dual responsibility on the part of many corporate executives became the basis for a new type of relationship between some corporations and the federal government—especially in militarily significant industries, such as transportation and energy.

In the years immediately following World War II a series of laws governing corporate acquisitions was passed which drastically altered the ways in which companies could merge.

The Celler-Kefauver Bill of allowed corporate mergers only across industry categories which, while adding some legal support to certain aspects of the earlier Taft-Hartley law governing monopolization within a single industry, allowed for unparalleled corporate expansion across a range of industries.

The sheer size and diversity of such corporate operations led to problems in the presentation of a public image not experienced by corporations in the past. Many corporate designers of the post-war period saw the phenomenon of the all-purpose logotype as a literal perceptual analogue to the social phenomenon of the multifaceted corporate conglomerate, and to a considerable extent, the new use of geometric, systematized modular configurations as logotypes was a manifestation of that analogy in their professional concern.

The issue for the corporate designer was how to relate a particular symbol to what the designer saw as a new corporate structure. The consideration of this symbolic relationship had nothing to do, however, with the uses to which a completed design program would be put by the corporation involved.

This is the paradox which Beall articulates in the last part of the above quote. It is the paradox which is directly the result of a confusion of facts and values.

There is no meaning inherent in graphic forms. That abstract configurations can convey meaning can be demonstrated by a glance at the cross on the nearest church steeple, but of course the information-bearing capabilities of logotypical forms can only be manifested through a given context. In describing the uses of this symbol as a corporate identifier, Goldscholl comments:. We found that the phosphate crystal in many cases, was formed as a Hexagonal Bipyramid….

We then included the letters IMC in the left panel to symbolize the fact that this company knew how to release this power to feed a hungry world. If we examine the manifestos and criticism supportive of Minimalist art we can see a similar symbiosis of form and value. What am I looking at when I look at one of your works.


Simply a large object made of geometric shapes? For the Minimalists, the perception of such order was equivalent sculptkre the sdulpture of calm and order provoked by the dolmens at Stonehenge, or a Japanese formal garden.

Of such gardens, Carl Andre has written:. These are places charged with a great calm, a very strong calm, and a feeling of, if one cannot really contain the universe, perhaps, in ones mind, than in these gardens sculoture has the very secure feeling that one is contained in the universe.

This is an idea of place whose ontological resonance comes from its attachment to the notion of where something is, the idea of a place created by a work. Since Morris insists that what he makes is art, we are confronted with an apparent contradiction—unresolvable through the terms the artist has given us, though non-paradoxical because the actual objects involved do in fact reflect an order, one perhaps not recognized by their makers, but sculprure order of values whose recetness is contained in a usage system as effective as that of the corporate logotype—because it is the same system.

For the Minimalists the revelatory potential inherent in their works is an order of value explicitly contained in the order of form.

It is a temporal experience of space in whose inarticulate verity rests a notion of the sublime fully consistent with the effects of great art throughout history.

But it is a belief which is infinitely corruptible, because of the confusion it creates between context and content, by associating a sort of raw value with specific configurations placed in specific locations a priori of the expectations of the viewer. It is a part of the nature of these works to act as triggers for thought and emotion preexisting in the viewer… It may be fair to say that these styles have been nourished by the ubiquitous question: It is a question not usually considered by the artist as a member of a corporate public.

Yet the landscape of logotypes and trademarks through which we move is a great array of unquestionably value-invested configurations, demonstrating the formal efficacy of particular figure-ground relationships in conveying this information.

And it is in the context of such graphic design that much Minimalist art yields up the secrets behind its formal effects. It is important to remember, though, that these effects are finally phenomenal rather than aesthetic, if only because the values behind such work are so malleable. Reprinted in Minimal Art: Society of Typographic Arts, Chicago,separate folio.

London, The Tate Gallery,p. Serota, Nicholas, Carl Andre exhibition catalogue. London, Whitechapel Art Gallery,n.

It reads in part: In the February issue of Artforum, Morris notes: In describing the uses of this symbol as a corporate identifier, Goldscholl comments: Of such gardens, Carl Andre has written: Darby Bannard, writing in the December issue of Artforum, states: This essay was first published in the catalogue for this exhibition. Who we are Visit us Contact us Join us. Facebook Instagram Twitter Vimeo.