Dirty socks, inflatable balloons, sharks in formaldehyde, stuffed donkeys, stones scattered on the ground and a great deal of pornography and coprophilia. Desecration, nonsense and pointless amusement seem to be the new categories of contemporary art, where the market alone decides the value of a work and all aesthetic judgment is banished. Nothing today means anything other than the brand names of artists who make art as apple trees make apples, regardless of the results, in blind obedience to the gospel of production and profit, while museums of contemporary art, empty exoskeletons devoid of contents, set the prices of these new “junk bonds”.
There would be no problem if this new art did not aspire to comparison with the art of tradition, to measure itself against the great works of the past. We need to come up with a new name for it, a new category for a new taxonomy in which to include all the ugly, foolish and often misshapen things that insist, however, on calling themselves art. Angelo Crespi has invented the term sgunz, sinking the blade of a disillusioned and competent observer into the rottenness of the present-day system of critics, curators, gallery owners and famous artists young and old, all simultaneously victims and champions of a mechanism that does nothing other than perpetuate itself. In line with a consolidated school of thought that runs from Robert Hughes to Jean Clair, this pamphlet presents itself as a manual for survival in an increasingly entangled jungle, a lifeboat for those who have lost their bearings, who sail against the tide and still believe in art. In real art.