Critic’s Notebook: Unpopular Causes, Part III

Reappropriation: Camp, Kitsch, and Sincerity “When something is just bad (rather than Camp), it’s often because it is too mediocre in its ambition.  The artist hasn’t attempted to do anything outlandish.” – “Notes on Camp” [1965], Susan Sontag “Need more clarification? To his fans Liberace was the epitome of cultured taste, but of course we know he was kitsch. However, unlike the not-quite-weird-enough musical stylings of ABBA, say, or the Village People, Liberace-style kitsch is so weird, so outré, that hipsters find it impossible to appropriate as cheese. Liberace didn’t make his work inappropriable on purpose; others, however, have. The … Continue reading Critic’s Notebook: Unpopular Causes, Part III

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