1. Identify 5 main themes in form of bullet points:

• The context in which spectators or viewers interpret the art.
• The different types of framing that is used throughout the gallery.
• The way they are constructed and presented.
• Being able to put this art in an area that can be appreciated, and observed.
• The space of the gallery and the area around it.

2. Write a short summary on the essay topic.

O’Doherty is discussing the understanding and elements of the modern day white cube gallery. He also tries to emphasize that the surrounding area around the picture frame is very important when looking at the image. This brings the viewer into a completely different “realm” if you will. It was as if the viewer stops being fully imam and dies. He also discusses the fact that the art work should only be surrounded by the white walls. This is so the work can stand alone with out any type of distractions.

3. Select on crucial quote.

“Art exists in a kind of eternity of display, and though there is lots of ‘period’ (late modern), there is no time”. p. 15

4. In his description of the white cube, O’Doherty observes that ‘the outside world must not come in’. Explain why this might be the case.

When O’Doherty mentions that the outside world should not be brought it, it was quite literal. He believes that any type of distractions will not be fair or appropriate for the work of arts. Everything except for the bare walls and the artwork should be left outside so that you can be with one with the art.

5. In his discussion of the shift that photography brought to an understanding of the exhibition space, O’Doherty states, ‘The edge is a firm convention looking in the subject had become fragile”. What does this mean?

When looking at photography O’Doherty believes that there should be no border. There is too much of a distraction if there is a frame around the photo. Unlike a painting where the frame helps show the beauty of the painting, the photograph needs something that is very simplistic like a white boarder or no boarder at all.

6. O’Doherty suggests that Courbet’s one-man salon des Refusees outside the exposition of 1855 was the first time a modern artist had to construct the context of his work. Explain the meaning of this phrase to its significance.

Originally artist were not able to place their artwork within the gallery. They were simply in charge on designing their art and that was it. They would then drop it off at their exhibition and let the gallery exhibit it.

(c) DACS; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation


Stella Portrait Series 1963 at Castelli 1964

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