Everybody Likes “Like Art”


“Like Art,” a type of bright, attention-grabbing work that aims for easy acceptance by servicing screen-tap culture, is everywhere.

By: Rob Colvin
Read the full article here: http://hyperallergic.com/361596/everybody-likes-like-art/

You’ve seen it before. It caught your eye. You smiled. Maybe at Frieze, Art Basel, the Armory Show, or NADA. Or it wasn’t there. It was at a gallery on the Lower East Side, or maybe in Chelsea. But it could’ve been on your computer. No, actually it was on your phone. Facebook? Wait, it was Instagram.

It’s everywhere, actually, and it’s called “Like Art.” It is art that looks very much like art you’ve already seen, that you know very well, and that you already like. Who doesn’t like Henri Matisse? Those sensuous curves and colorful overlaps of otherwise flattened planes. Pablo Picasso, too, and his architectonic forms and bold exaggerations. There are also the elegant anthropomorphisms of Georgia O’Keeffe. Run through 20th-century art and hit the high points, especially the most chromatic ones — like Judy Chicago’s work, or Ellsworth Kelly’s. If it’s a recognizable style, motif, or gesture, it’s probably in the database from which Like Art — or work that merely looks “like” art — is generated. It gets shipped from a Brooklyn studio to an art fair booth in Miami Beach, possibly still wet, but priced just right. That price is two digits shorter than the secondary market painting the work is derived from and gets curated next to. It’s “the look for less,” with no greater aesthetic aspirations. It lives for heart taps, thumbs-up clicks, and space on people’s walls — digital or brick-and-mortar.