Curationism: How Curating Took over the Art World and Everything Else (2014/2015) traces the history of curating in the so-called West and its so-called art world alongside the development of late-capitalist ideas about value. The book's first section examines the relationship between the performance of value (inside art, and out) and anxiety—which, at the time, we could see in popular digital and marketing cultures, where seemingly everything was "curated" and seemingly everyone was a "curator." In this talk, Balzer updates the ideas in Curationism for 2019—what feels like another time entirely—to look at how the expression of value in the art-world establishment is as anxious (and as tied to late-capitalism) as ever. The talk will broach ideas in Balzer's forthcoming book, This Is Not New.
David Balzer is a writer, teacher and editor based in tkaronto/Toronto. He is the author of two books, Curationism: How Curating Took Over the Art World and Everything Else, winner of ICA London's Book of the Year, and the short-fiction collection Contrivances. In 2015, he won the International Award for Art Criticism. He has written about art and culture for the Globe and Mail, the Guardian, Frieze, Artforum, The Believer and others, and was editor-in-chief and co-publisher of Canadian Art from 2016 to 2019.