Buried inside a recent sprawling, free-associative blog essay about how performance art, film and video function differently based on institutional context, David Byrne briefly mentions a conversation with Klaus Biesenbach, a curator at MoMA and P.S.1. Before moving on to more pressing subjects like Kenneth Anger and Fassbinder, Byrne writes that Biesenbach recounted how, at “a recent art world dinner,” he’d met Lady Gaga. In what must have been a very brief conversation, Gaga told Biesenbach “that she felt she was a performance artist—or an artist of some sort.” The very blunt and opinionated curator was quick to respond.
Biesenbach told Gaga,
that she was not, and reportedly she was a bit taken aback and stunned at his reply. Biesenbach didn’t exactly detail as to why in fact she wasn’t an artist, but by way of a sort of explanation he related that Susan Sontag had pronounced to him, “All we have is our opinion.”
From there Byrne goes into a funny, dismissive analysis of the supposed critical democracy that exists on the internet. So, internet democracy, Lady Gaga: artist or not? (ArtInfo)