Brian Sewell #ArtThing2015

What’s your ArtThing of 2015?

2015 saw something of an identity crisis for contemporary art, as artists felt increasingly obliged to address the world’s most pressing socio-political issues. Okwui Enwezor’s central exhibition at Venice suggested sadly that art (and artists) might not be up to it; the awarding of the Turner Prize to architects Assemble seemed to confirm it. But among the shallow and the shouty, several things stood out. The most complex and thought-provoking political work was Pavel Büchel’s THE MOSQUE (soon shut down by the Venice authorities). My other highlight of the year was Martin Tebus’ brilliant curation of the permanent collection at the Trondheim Kunstmuseum. But mostly I’ll recall 2015 as the year we said goodbye to Brian Sewell – a lovely man, a wonderful critic, generous with his advice, terrifying in person and on paper, and, ultimately, an absolute hero.

Brian_Sewell

Writer, editor, curator www.tom-jeffreys.co.uk

@tomjeffreys

About Tom and Crystal

Tom Jeffreys is a writer, editor and occasional curator with a particular interest in contemporary art that crosses over into the sciences or explores our relationship with the environment. He writes regularly for Frieze, Monocle, Apollo, The Daily Telegraph, and World of Interiors. Tom is also editor of online magazine, The Learned Pig, and his first book - Signal Failure: London to Birmingham, HS2 on foot - has been published by Influx Press. Crystal Bennes is an artist and an architecture and design writer currently based in Paris.