Joana Isabel Martins Navarro – Abstract

Art criticism: The transformation of a moral matter into a global free speech

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The role, the form and the author of art criticism have changed. After the experimentalism of the vanguards that broke with the canons of classic arts, a crisis of representation started in the middle of the last century. The introduction of the curator and the collector in the international art circle forced the change of the art criticism model proposed by Denis Diderot.

Nowadays, art is judged in the name of the public and society is criticized in the name of art. The boundaries between the duty of the critic, the theoretical and the artist are unclear, leading to a crisis in the art’s world. Simultaneously, art criticism was never so massively produced and so massively ignored.

This paper intends to be a reflection about the path of criticism throughout history, intersecting the eradication of the distinctions between image and action, production and reception, with the introduction of new global art forms, in the West, and an artistic practice that wants to interfere with reality. Finally, it also intends to understand the process that turned art criticism into an art in its own right, where the disciplinary heterogeneity of its actors transformed a moral matter into a global free speech.

art criticism, artist, spectator, public.