October 17, 2003

Curatoraprose: "Okay, we get it, we get it..."

"Elvis to Andy to Barbra,"
Is all ye know on Earth,
And all ye need to know.

There's a school of writing that has infected museums. It's called "curatoraprose," and it arises from the strange compulsion of museums to explain what can be seen. It is a terrible affliciton that kills and cripples thousands of artworks annually. Here's an example:

"Deborah Kass mimics Andy Warhol's portrait of Elvis Presley, substituting Barbra Steisand in the role of Yentl for the king of rock and roll. In this painting, the artist comments on the roles played by gender and religion in today's culture, humorously contrasting Yentl in Yeshiva-boy drag with Elvis — America's iconic image of virility."

From: Making Connections in Art and Jewish Culture

Yeshiva drag vs. the very "iconic image of virility." We've always felt that Barbra was an iconic image of virility in drag. Unlike Elvis, she's still recording if not appearing.

Posted by Vanderleun at October 17, 2003 2:26 PM
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