Someone Get Souren Melikian A Blogspot Account

Souren Melikian's auction analysis for the International Herald Tribune/ New York Times is almost always entertainingly specious, but he is at his best/worst when he writes about contemporary art, about which he obviously knows nothing:

The next lot, "Cristina Passing By," was the fun figure of a girl realistically painted in tissue paper on stainless steel signed by Michelangelo Pistoletto in 1968. It also far exceeded the high estimate, if at a modest level, when it brought £313,250. Much earlier than the Cattelan, it is more original.

But originality or creativity is hardly what motivates the buyers of contemporary art in its forms now promoted in the auction arena. What triggers a response is an easy, instantly perceived image -- and the echo that it receives in the media. Like slogans in politics, the power of words repeated a hundred times generates success. Achievement has little relevance, if any at all.

Seriously, why does the Times keep publishing this untethered nonsense?

What does this even mean?? Novelty Sets Cheerful Tone for Christie's Contemporary Auction [nyt]
Previously: The Eternal Sunshine of Souren Melikian's Spotless Mind

Since 2001 here at, I've been blogging about the creative process—my own and those of people who interest me. That mostly involves filmmaking, art, writing, research, and the making thereof.

Many thanks to the Creative Capital | Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Program for supporting that time.

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first published: July 1, 2010.

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