By Malcolm Barnard
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Additional info for Art, Design and Visual Culture: An Introduction
Again Clark is quite candid about this; he What is Visual Culture? 23 says 'the Baroque is over-emphasised at the expense of Classicism' (xvi) and he leaves out the German Romantics altogether. While the definition of the cultural in visual culture should not omit the kind of culture that is presupposed in Clark's work, it should not be limited to that definition. The culture of the dominant European groups of the past four hundred years is no doubt culture. and an elitist, unilinear conception of culture will not be sufficient for the analysis of visual culture.
Indeed, there is a further, and stronger, objection that, rather than being placed in an 36 Art, Design and Visual Culture already existing social and historical context, it is these very types and styles that first provide those social and historical contexts. This is the objection that it is not simply a case of looking for the social and historical context, but of looking at the ways in which any idea of social and historical context is only produced by those styles and types of objects in the first place.
The telephone, the 26 Art, Design and Visual Culture calculator and the Rolodex are all objects with connotations of business. When the institutions are not those of business, they are of expensive, conspicuous leisure and of the home. Unsurprisingly, even the home is treated in terms of impressing one's friends and in terms of male control. The Charles Eames chair, for example, is described as a 'command post from which the master could keep control of his home' (109). The leisure is expensive leisure, involving Barbours, green Uniroyals and a bespoke shotgun from Holland & Holland.
Art, Design and Visual Culture: An Introduction by Malcolm Barnard