Artist Senga Nengudi
Senga Nengudi performing Air Propo at JAM, 1981. Photo: Courtesy Senga Nengudi and Lévy Gorvy.

Faith Ringgold, Charles Ray, and a notorious NFT-maker.

“The paradigm of the 21st-century art world is paradox. On the one hand, there is the vast interconnected network of artists, collectors, curators, critics (hi!), advisers, galleries, and fairs that make up the art world as fulfillment center, with assets that can be shipped anywhere, anytime. Enormous amounts of money are pumped into this aesthetic matrix by people who came through the 2008 financial collapse and the pandemic stronger, with even more accumulated wealth. But instead of buying only modernist masters or postwar stars, many of these people are buying art as a way to signal ethical correction and self-improvement, a way to bestow beneficence on those whose lives have been a living hell under the system that generated their wealth.”

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