Home 2014 | History | Artists | Artworks | Video | Writing | Galleries | Comments | Contact

Comments about the 2014 Counterweight

Comments may be posted in the ATOA Forums:
and in Facebook:

Bill Rabinovitch will read through the posted comments and re-post the most interesting ones here.
You may also e-mail comments to him directly: rabinart@aol.com



Flash Light




Post #: 8434

ATOA has a panel planned for April 4, 2014 on the Whitney Counterweight. The Counterweight began in the 1970's when Clement Greenberg challenged Bill Rabinovitch to come up with a response to the Whitney Biennial, and Rabinovitch, along with Vernita N'Cognita, and Barnaby Ruhe, organized the first Counterweight in the tradition of the Salon des Refuses.

Check it out: www.atoa.org/Spring2014/April.htm#04/04 and feel free to leave your comments here.

Bill Rabinovitch

artist painter videographer


Post #: 8435

Hi everyone-- you can add your comments about the Whitney Counterweight here.

Servio Mammon

art consultant


Post #: 8437

You say your Counterweight (CW) has beaten the Whitney in the past. However, your CW is way outside the market, which is the beauty of your CW, and why it can always beat the Whitney and the gallery shows: CW can ignore the market, ignore the gallery fads, ignore what the collectors on the museum boards might like, indeed ignore the collectors, ignore the museum boards, ignore the museum directors and curators, and just consider quality of the work.

You're reasoning as if quality mattered in the art market, but of course it doesn't, as you can tell by what sells. What matters in the art market is marketing, merchandizing, sales records, auction results. These are the sort of issues that matter in the art market. You're thinking about what an artist making art for art's sake would think about. How can you possibly think that's relevant in today's art world?

Bill Rabinovitch

artist painter videographer



Post #: 8438

Hi Servio, your comments reflect extreme cynicism. Visionary artists acting alone or in groups often coming out of the blue are always capable of changing the system. That's the way it's always been as with Picasso, Van Gogh & dozens of others. Some artist's in the Counterweight 2014 are geniuses compared to anything in the Whitney -- & the Whitney doesn't even want genius anymore from todays artists & will go to any length to discourage it.

Our 2014 internet based Counterweight of Facebook artists permits us to reach out globally & nothing as important as this can now be stopped - as it's an idea whose time has come. Today we have an art system corrupted by $ most have bought into where quantity/production has trumped quality. There is a stepping into change after all this & we are that change.

This year the Counterweight 2014 being Facebook driven is infinitely more effective reaching out globally with the message that artists can do it & take back the creative power from the establishment art world reality -- & really do what artist's are supposed to -- but been disallowed from in contributing to a better society beyond values of money. We beat the Whitney 3 times in a row with past Counterweights so said all the art media in NYC major & minor & all of that was totally real. Read the statement page for more:

Servio Mammon

art consultant


Post #: 8439

You wrote, "Visionary artists acting alone or in groups often coming out of the blue are always capable of changing the system. That's the way it's always been as with Picasso, Van Gogh & dozens of others." Nonsense! Allow me to disabuse you of your naivete on true art history.

Picasso was undeniably a great draftsman. He warned, "If you don't want me to steal your ideas, don't invite me into your studio." The artists he stole his greatest ideas from were the so called primitive artists being shown in history museums. Those artists never became famous, nor wealth from their work. Picasso had the dealer Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler to thank for his success.

Van Gogh was a madman who was not able to sell his work, however his brother Theo was an art dealer, who financed Vincent, and began to sell his work after Vincent died.

"Artists make art because they have to," as Ivan Karp infamously proclaimed. It's visionary dealers who are capable of changing the system if they know how to market such work.

Countless visionary artists create great work, but are never promoted by great dealers, and wind up dying in obscurity, their life's work thrown out in dumpsters at their death. You see them among your friends who have passed, and never made it to fame.

If you read Jean Renoir's biography of his father, there were painters Pierre-Auguste admired, who never made it through the sieve of history. What did the impressionist artists who succeeded have in common? The dealer Durand-Ruel, who created a market for their work.

The abstract expressionists are a great example. They were creating brilliant work, which was reviewed by a few critics, but was largely ignored by the art market. Then Rockefeller was embarrassed when he commissioned a work by Diego Rivera, which glorified communism, and he decided abstract expressionism was safer, and bought a Pollock for 5 figures, and suddenly everyone took notice of abstract expressionists and their galleries because the work sold.

Willem de Kooning joked that "You could give that son of a bitch (Leo Castelli) two beer cans and he could sell them"; Johns took the challenge seriously, gave him a sculpture of two Ballentines beer cans, and Castelli sold them, proving it was Castelli who made them successful.

The only way for you to create an art market revolution is in the marketplace. Since you've claimed the internet as your exhibition space, you could have a legitimate movement if your group's work sells on the internet, via eBay or Etsy, et al. However you will then fall into the category of post-internet art, and that category is already being derided: http://culturetwo.wordpress.com/2014/03/31/why-i-hate-post-internet-art/.

bill rabinovitch


Post #: 8440

Unlike other art shows Whitney Counterweight 2014 has No Expiration Date & will last as long as Youtube/Facebook even improving over time. It's an ongoing glove in the face to the Whitney Biennial in 2014 -- just as we succeeded doing in the far past multiple times -- again proving a few artists can mount something of more significance with higher quality art with no budget that the art can raise consciousness & make a difference to the wider public beyond any consideration of marketing.

Germain Falconer

Star Freighter Pilot, Art Dealer on Tatooine



Post #: 8441


Actually I think Rabinovitch's Counterweight is a reaction against post-internet art, and has already gone beyond that. The author of the Wordpress blog thought the next art movement would be "Proto-something," not "Post-something," but he couldn't tell what that something will turn out to be.

What it will be is already clear to me: Facebook just bought Oculus Rift, and the buzz is that Virtual-Reality will be the next big thing. What Rabinovitch has in his Counterweight is Proto-Virtual-Reality Art.

This is clear from the work I did with him, which is already set in virtual worlds, and you don't need to wear a bulky set of goggles to experience it. How cool is that?

Servio, please take a look at "In a Solar System Far, Far Away," and see if you don't agree this is the future: www.whitneycounterweight.com.

Post reply

Whitney Counterweight 2014
Home 2014 | Statement | History | Artists | Artworks | Video | Writing | Galleries | Contact