The Last Newspaper

What I take issue with isn’t the exhibition itself but the title. What about this show justifies calling it The Last Newspaper, New Museum? A decent survey of newspaper-related artwork, sure. But the last newspaper? Isn’t that just a bit dramatic? Maybe I’m just burnt out on the so-called death of print but this overstatement seems needlessly sensationalist.

That said, there’s some good work in the show… There’s a captivating video piece by Angel Nevarez and Valerie Tevere titled A Dutiful Scrivener (2010) that features an interview with Bill McDonald, the obituaries editor of the New York Times. Whether you love it or hate it, Dash Snow’s collection of New York tabloid covers documenting the fall of Saddam Hussein (covered in glitter and one of the artist’s bodily fluids) is bound to elicit a reaction. Hans Haacke’s News prints a steady stream of stories fed from an RSS feed… piles of paper accumulate behind the relatively humble looking little daisy wheel printer suggesting a certain to futility to the notion of keeping up with the news.

The New Museum’s The Last Newspaper is on view until January 9th. If you haven’t seen it already and can’t make it, here’s a small collection of pictures from the show…

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Categories: Exhibitions

One Response to “The Last Newspaper”

  1. Despite my age I was fortunate enough to catch the end of the traditional newspaper that was surrounded by rubylith film, drafting pencil, and photo-enlarger. I’ve worked in the publishing industry (pre-press/production, design, and marketi…ng) within NYC for a number of years at companies Hearst, Meredith, and Bonnier… seeing first hand the impact the recession had in 2008; the folding of magazines and newspapers occurred everywhere. “BEAST” was one of the first .pdf magazines I had ever encountered back in early 2000. Is the end of print here? Perhaps not at the moment, but the print industry is most certainly changing, I’m an artist and experimenter of contemporary printmaking techniques… as much as I love the tactile and paper, the industry is certainly changing. Magazines and Newspapers of the present may possibly become the supplemental publishing of the future, no one really knows, but we will adapt. The new generation is surrounded by the ipad and iphone among other groundbreaking global technology, with nano power development and whats to come, I don’t think the future generations will know the difference between “the monitor” and “newspaper,” this is already apparent in the new applications and software constantly changing around us. As for the New Museum exhibition title, in terms of marketing hype, presentation, and the current progressive nature of our times, I find it quite appropriate, if not simply bold.

    But of course this is only my opinion,