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I am completely an elitist, in the cultural but emphatically not the social sense. I prefer the good to the bad, the articulate to the mumbling, the aesthetically developed to the merely primitive, and full to partial consciousness. I love the spectacle of skill, whether it's an expert gardener at work, or a good carpenter chopping dovetailsaI don't think stupid or ill-read people are as good to be with as wise and fully literate ones. I would rather watch a great tennis player than a mediocre oneaConsequently, most of the human race doesn't matter much to me, outside the normal and necessary frame of courtesy and the obligation to respect human rights. I see no reason to squirm around apologizing for this. I am, after all, a cultural critic, and my main job is to distinguish the good from the second-rate.o Robert Hughes wrote with brutal honesty about art, architecture, culture, religion, and himself. He translated his passionsuof which there were many, both positive and negativeubrilliantly, convincingly, and with vitality and immediacy, always holding himself to the same rigorous standards of skill, authenticity, and significance that he did his subjects. There never wa

 

Details

ISBN: 9781400044450
Audience: Postgraduate, Research & Scholarly
Format: Hardback
Number of Pages: 684
Publication Date: 17 Nov 2015
Publisher: Random House USA Inc
Publication City, Country: New York, United States
Dimensions (cm): 24.1(H) x 16.4(L) x 4.1(W)
Weight (gm): 1010

 

Reviews

"An eye-opener. [The Spectacle of Skill] contains some of the most nakedly emotional prose [Hughes] ever committed to paper." --The New York Times

"Hughes wrote many kinds of things in a career that spanned four decades . . . but his primary goal was always the same: to entertain, especially while he was educating. The Spectacle of Skill will serve as a generous reminder to all those familiar with Hughes's prose of just how dazzlingly he succeeded at that goal, and it will introduce newcomers to one of the great critical voices of the late 20th century." --The Christian Science Monitor

"[The Spectacle of Skill] echo[es] with an erudite authority that would seem impossible to obtain in our day, and a bombast that would be unbearably rude. The combination, conveyed in a clear and entertaining prose, will feel nostalgic even to those who come to know [Hughes] only by this book." --San Francisco Chronicle

"Art writing is rarely readable and hardly ever done well. Few did it better than Robert Hughes." --Chicago Tribune

"For anyone who wishes emphatically to know what is what in the here and now." --The Wall Street Journal


An eye-opener. [The Spectacle of Skill] contains some of the most nakedly emotional prose [Hughes] ever committed to paper. The New York Times

Hughes wrote many kinds of things in a career that spanned four decades . . . but his primary goal was always the same: to entertain, especially while he was educating. The Spectacle of Skill will serve as a generous reminder to all those familiar with Hughes s prose of just how dazzlingly he succeeded at that goal, and it will introduce newcomers to one of the great critical voices of the late 20th century. The Christian Science Monitor

[The Spectacle of Skill] echo[es] with an erudite authority that would seem impossible to obtain in our day, and a bombast that would be unbearably rude. The combination, conveyed in a clear and entertaining prose, will feel nostalgic even to those who come to know [Hughes] only by this book. San Francisco Chronicle
Art writing is rarely readable and hardly ever done well. Few did it better than Robert Hughes. Chicago Tribune
For anyone who wishes emphatically to know what is what in the here and now. The Wall Street Journal"

 

Author Biography

ROBERT HUGHES was born in Australia in 1938. In 1970, he moved to the United States to become chief art critic for Time, a position he held until 2001. His books include The Shock of the New, The Fatal Shore, Nothing if Not Critical, The Culture of Complaint, Barcelona, American Visions, A Jerk on One End, Goya, Things I Didn't Know, and Rome. He is a New York Public Library Literary Lion and was the recipient of a number of literary awards and prizes, including two Frank Jewell-Mather Awards. He is widely held as the most respected art critic of our time.
The Spectacle of Skill
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