Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Art and Design
Norwegian figurative painter Odd Nerdrum has garnered fame and notoriety for his founding of the Kitsch Movement, a group of contemporary painters who have rejected the modern usage of the term “art” in order to return to the style of the Old Masters. When asked what the goal of a painter within the Kitsch Movement is, Nerdrum claims that it is to create masterpieces. This paper examines the seemingly paradoxical connection of the words “kitsch” and “masterpiece” through the lens of contemporary art and visual culture in order to address the state of figural painting and tradition. The argument presented here is that Nerdrum, in rejecting the term art, is in fact acting in a very artistic way that aims to reinvigorate both art and painting. However, Nerdrum’s stated goal of creating a masterpiece today is not without problems, which must be addressed in connection with the Kitsch Movement’s production.
Walker, Jordan, "The Kitsch Masterpiece: Odd Nerdrum and the Problem of the New Old Masters." Thesis, Georgia State University, 2021.
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