Kristian Vistrup Madsen: Art Criticism is Too Easy

Plattform and Tag Team are happy to invite you to a talk “Art Criticism is Too Easy” by Kristian Vistrup Madsen, giving an observation of the contemporary economic and social conditions for writing art criticism, and some of the debates about what good art criticism is.

The talk “Art Criticism is Too Easy” discusses a perceived conflict in contemporary criticism between expertise and a more informal style, a kind of affective lyricism. On the one hand, old-guard critics such as Benjamin Buchloh may be able to draw on the whole history of art and philosophy, but exceedingly few are able to decipher his texts. On the other, Isabelle Graw has likened Artforum editor-in-chief David Velasco’s preference for good writers over experts to the Trumpian post-truth. But the problem is also structural: can magazines afford to pay for expertise, and if not, who can afford to write? How does art criticism not only respond to the market, but is severely and directly determined by it? Finally, there is the issue of objectivity versus subjectivity, and the place of the writing “I” in the text. Let’s say this expertise/writing binary is a false one – what can the fictive element of art criticism do to undermine it?

Kristian Vistrup Madsen is a writer and critic based in Berlin. His writing has been published in Artforum, Frieze, Kunstkritikk and Glänta, among others. Website:

Plattform is Bergen Kunsthall’s lecture series connected to our exhibition programme and wider contemporary debates.

Tag Team Studio is an artist run space for contemporary art, run by Cecilie A. Størkson and Morten Kvamme. Tag Team is an open and flexible platform with a focus on the regional art scene. The space was established in 2010, and today Tag Team is situated in Møllendalsveien 17 in Bergen.

The project is funded by Bergen Kommune, Fritt Ord, and the Creative Europe programme of the European Union as part of Re-Imagine Europe project.

12. oktober 2019 Kl.: 14:00