Although he reported on his “Art Fair Hangover” already in 1989, Walter Grasskamp never left the business of art criticism but continued to write for newspapers, magazines and catalogues, when he started teaching at universities and academies. Known for his expertise in the political theory and social history of museums, exhibitions, and public art, he also fostered the oral history of German post-war art through interviews with painters, curators and gallery owners. Fascinated by the way artists have of establishing, developing and defending an individual oeuvre, he also wrote profiles that have been collected in two anthologies, in 1986 and 2010. In addition to the essay “Art Fair Hangover”, nineteen of these profiles, written between 1979 and 2019, have been selected for this book. They cover four decades of writing about contemporary art, fired by enthusiasm and scepticism alike.
Edited by Jean-Marc Poinsot, AICA's series, Art Critics of The World, aims to offer the widest possible readership texts by original critics who best represent their countries, and who are not yet as internationally famous as they should be.
Walter Grasskamp (born 1950 in Kapellen/Erft) is a German art critic and sociologist, Professor for Art History at the Academy of Fine Arts, Munich.