Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=618522
 


 



One Hit Wonders: Why Some of the Most Important Works of Modern Art are Not by Important Artists


David W. Galenson


University of Chicago - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

November 2004

NBER Working Paper No. w10885

Abstract:     
How can minor artists produce major works of art? This paper considers 13 modern visual artists, each of whom produced a single masterpiece that dominates the artist's career. The artists include painters, sculptors, and architects, and their masterpieces include works as prominent as the painting American Gothic, the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D. C. In each case, these isolated achievements were the products of innovative ideas that the artists formulated early in their careers, and fully embodied in individual works. The phenomenon of the artistic one-hit wonder highlights the nature of conceptual innovation, in which radical new approaches based on new ideas are introduced suddenly by young practitioners.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 65

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Date posted: November 7, 2006  

Suggested Citation

Galenson, David W., One Hit Wonders: Why Some of the Most Important Works of Modern Art are Not by Important Artists (November 2004). NBER Working Paper No. w10885. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=618522

Contact Information

David W. Galenson (Contact Author)
University of Chicago - Department of Economics ( email )
1126 East 59th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
773-702-8191 (Phone)
773-702-8490 (Fax)
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
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