“We couldn’t launch an astronaut if we had to,” stated CBS’s Scott Pelley during the opening of a recent 60 Minutes. Space: it’s a highly contested commodity. Obama has cancelled the US space program and, in turn, thrust the politics of space back into the spotlight. It’s the latest entry in the larger history of galactic space, architectural space, or even personal space. The politics of the “art space” span a particularly complicated history. Institutional critique transpired into relational aesthetics, but where are we now in this moment of new-institutionalist slumber? As globally branded museums and galleries (with corporate and privately accumulated corporate sponsorship at the core) become embedded deeper in the politics of finance, we are likely to be confronted with a prolonged protest from artists and practitioners.
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