Donald Kuspit is one of America’s most important art critics. He is a Distinguished Professor of Art History and Philosophy at the State University of New York at Stony Brook and has received fellowships from the Fulbright Commission, the NEA, and the Guggenheim Foundation among others. He is a contributing editor to Artforum, Sculpture, the New Art Examiner, and Tema Celeste Magazines as well as editor of Art Criticism. He is author and editor of hundreds of articles and books including The End of Art published in 2004. He frequently writes for Artnet.com
Diane Thodos is an artist and art critic and was a student of Donald Kuspit at the School of Visual Arts in New York City from 1987 to 1992. She is also a former student of Stanley William Hayter and Sam Gilliam and received a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant in 2002. She has exhibited most recently at the National Hellenic Museum in Chicago and is represent by the Paule Friedland/Alex Rivault Gallery in Paris, The Traeger/Pinto Gallery in Mexico City, and the Thomas Masters Gallery in Chicago. She will be exhibiting at the Kouros gallery in New York City in 2010.
Donald Kuspit: That’s one way of putting it. Let’s put in another way. Let’s take Mr. Koons who is always a good example: a sort of capitalist art about Capitalism. Now here’s a commodity; taking something we know – a vacuum cleaner – and it’s new. So there’s newness, and it’s American, and it’s “art” which is supposedly to “make it new. “ What he is doing by putting it in a vitrine and exhibiting it as art is he gives it this exhibition value, which is the only art value now. What he is doing is highlighting something that is meant to be exhibited, initially, to get you to buy it – and then it has certain use value.
Donald Kuspit (b. March 26, 1935) is an American art critic, poet, and Distinguished Professor of art history and philosophy at the State University of New York at Stony Brook and professor of art history at the School of Visual Arts. Kuspit is one of America's most distinguished art critics. He was formerly the A. D. White Professor-at-Large at Cornell University (1991-1997). He received the Frank Jewett Mather Award for Distinction in Art Criticism in 1983 (given by the College Art Association). His essay Reconsidering the Spiritual in Art appears in Blackbird: an online journal of literature and the arts.