In this lecture, Alexander Alberro, Virginia Bloedel Wright Associate Professor of Art History at Barnard College, explores forms of art and spectatorship that have emerged in the past two decades and are referred to as “contemporary.” The new modes are varied, covering a span from digital productions and sculptural installations that overwhelm cognition and produce sheer affect, to relational practices that seek to immerse art in the world of everyday life. Together, they have significantly realigned the manner in which art addresses its spectator—indeed, they have constructed the spectator in a new way.
Professor Alberro is the author of Conceptual Art and the Politics of Publicity. His essays have appeared in a wide array of journals and exhibition catalogues. He has also edited and co-edited a number of volumes, most recently Art After Conceptual Art and Institutional Critique: An Anthology of Artists’ Writings.