Their patron saint, and mine, too, is the narrator of (“Flights” ( ), (a chain of related fragments by the Nobel-winning author Olga Tokarczuk , who tells us: “Fluidity, mobility, illusoriness – these are precisely the qualities that make us civilized.” For so many artists and critics and curators of my generation, your career has to fit in a carry-on.
We knew, as the climate crisis deepened, that this global art world constantly on the move was coming under necessary pressure. Now the prophylactic stasis demanded by this pandemic has violently accelerated the art world’s reassessment of what all this travel was good for.
The task of artists in this new plague year will be to reestablish painting, photography, performance and the rest as something that can still be charged with meaning, and still have global impact, even when we’re not in motion. Or at least that is the long-term mandate; the short-term task is to survive.