Mark Rappolt and JJ Charlesworth

What’s the point of contemporary art?

Wednesday 30 October 2013, 6.30 - 8 pm

Honk Kong Theatre, Clement House, 99 Aldwych

London School of Economics and Political Science, London, WC2B 4JF


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Art & Culture's lecture programme is generously supported by the Singer-Zahariev Family





















With Frieze Art Fair just one event in an increasingly hectic and international culture of contemporary art, the art world seems to be going from strength to strength, even in the midst of recession and austerity. Collectors pay record prices at auctions, while commercial galleries set up global branches to meet new markets and museums pursue ambitious expansion plans to cater for a growing audience.


But as the art world seems to get ever bigger, is the culture of art itself changing? With public funding being cut and smaller commercial galleries and independent spaces struggling to survive, is contemporary art in danger of becoming more corporate and more spectacular? And, with the globalisation of the art world gathering pace, can artists still speak to a broader public, or are they increasingly only addressing a transnational elite of the rich and powerful? Who is art for today, and what can artists hope to achieve?


Mark Rappolt is the Editor of ArtReview and is based in London and Vienna. His writing has appeared in a number of publications and includes catalogue essays on Slater Bradley, Alex Katz, David Cronenberg and women artists of the 1960s, amongst others. Published books include monographs on the architects Greg Lynn and Frank Gehry.


JJ Charlesworth is the Associate Editor for ArtReview and writes regularly for magazines such as Art Monthly, Time Out London and the US website Art Agenda. He has been writing about contemporary art since leaving Goldsmiths College, London in 1996, where he completed a fine art degree.