31. What are aesthetics?
The Aesthetic Function of Public Art

by Hewitt & Jordan with Dave Beech
curated by Gavin Wade as part of his Strategic Questions projects
Venice Biennale, 8 June - 6 November 2005

Location of artwork: Ponte dei Barcaroli, on the Calle dei Frutariol, San Marco district, Venice Biennale, and free poster/publication available at various sites. (Poster /publication still available by request from Hewitt and Jordan)

Launched at Campo S. Fantin/bridge at Calle Chiesa, San Marco,
5-6pm, Friday 10th June, 2005.

Supported by the British Council and the Arts Council, England
The Aesthetic Function of Public Art is the final work in the series of text works entitled the Three Functions. The works entitled, The Economic Function of Public Art, The Social Function of Public Art, and The Aesthetic Function of Public Art, aim to examine the tensions and contradictions that exist within public art. The Aesthetic Function of Public Art describes the ideology of aesthetics, a charismatic and deceptive form of knowledge, often described as ‘good taste’ that as Dave Beech describes, “fulfils its social function by masquerading as asocial. Taste conceals its modes of acquisition so that its social divisiveness appears as natural distinctions between those who have it and those who don’t.”(1) The text work aims to contest the aesthetic ideology of public art and to enter into a discourse about the reformation of culture.

Do you ant to hear our raido interview with Peter Coffin from WPS1, Gavin Wade, Susan Philipsz and Christina Kennedy? Go to this link
Venice Interviews: Public Art at the Biennal,

Curated by Gavin Wade
40 projects in 40 publications

Strategic Questions
is an ongoing project to develop 40 projects in response to 40 questions written by R. Buckminster Fuller. Each project is an artwork or a combination of artworks that are developed in relation to 40 different publication scenarios. Each project tackles one question and is placed into an existing magazine, journal or other publication vehicle or a new publication is developed in response to a specific site and context.

"It is my assumption that the following forty questions must be definitively answered before we may realistically discuss our respective philosophies and grand strategies.


© 2005 Hewitt & Jordan