"An artist’s work will get reported on if it sells to a special person or for a lot of money, but no one writes about art if it’s just there on the wall or on the floor. They write about it as a transaction, not just because it exists. Like, all the images from Basel Hong Kong were of Jeff Koons unveiling his sculpture. No photos of the sculptures; it’s the celebrity people are interested in, not the art. Not even the artist. They don’t care about his ideas, they care that he has made a lot of money and become famous. That’s the whole lifestyle thing. Art as decoration, art as all sorts of things, but not as the difficult philosophical proposition which is to me the most interesting thing about it. I miss having discussions about problems within painting and that never gets discussed anymore.
I think places like Louisiana or Tate get big numbers but it’s not purely about art. It’s about a more general user experience: Location, landscape, food and so on. The audience that comes for art rather than experience is really small.
You know, I’m not some naïve idiot. I know that there’s the whole art world around it, but you would think that art is still in there somewhere. Like, there’s a whole world around football, but still people do talk about football. Of course they also talk about the price of the players or transfer windows and so on, but they still most of the time talk about football and the actual game that is taking place. Whereas with art it seems like everything around it is the discussion, and the actual discussion has disappeared. It’s just about transaction, it’s just about who moved from which gallery to which gallery, which gallery shows what, who suing who and so on. Who gives a fuck, really?"
David Risley on closing his Copenhagen gallery.
80 pgs, 27 × 21 cm, Softcover, 2018,