Jerry Vile proves that all 'contemporary art' is a 'temporary con'

While you won't find Jerry Vile's artwork in the DIA (though you might've spotted it out on its front lawn), we have to hand it to the guy: Vile knows how to create a spectacle. Normally we don't like to just copy and paste press releases ... but we'll give exception to Vile, because the guy is so damn funny.

Take it away, Jerry:

Artist Exhibits in Darkness …To Shed Light on Art World Charlatans.

Detroit's most beloved artist, Jerry Vile, is intent on exposing the huge fraud that for years has been perpetrated on the Art going public. His target, the contemporary art crooks who have been using parlor tricks and schemes to bilk the gullible out of their hard earned cash. It's all part of Vile’s plan to protect the innocent, who naïvely believe this hokum to be real.

“All art is an illusion — but the biggest illusion of all is what it is worth,” snorts the crusading challenger. “It’s time these shysters got their comeuppance, I’m ready to take on the entire art racket.”

One may experience this revelation in Oracle Of Vile (One Night Only) Saturday May 30th at The Tangent Gallery in Uptown Detroit.

Con + Temporary

The contemporary art swindlers aren’t hiding. These billionaire bamboozlers make headlines when they set the prices for this fine art flimflam. “This is a scam,” informs Vile as he intelligently dissects roots of the very word itself, Contemporary.

Con is to deceive, to defraud through illicit or immoral activities typically for financial gain.

—Then there is Temporary, fleeting, a lack of permanence, to vanish. “It’s almost as if the public were begging to be hoodwinked.” he chortles.

So what is Vile’s nostrum for this high brow hornswoggle? “Transparency. I’ll be using both scientific and spiritual methods to rescue art,” beams the brilliant bon vivant. “Unlike most galleries who typically use bright lights on white walls to distract by blinding the patron to the hokum hanging on the walls, my pieces will be surrounded in darkness, with each work magnificently illuminated individually, so as not to disrupt the ether which permeates all space. Furthermore, the ever-present vibrations of electromagnetic radiation will be controlled allowing the patrons maximum viewing pleasure”.

As if this were not enough, each patron will be allowed to consult the Oracle of Vile, a scientifically designed future prediction machine. “It's pretty simple,” Vile crows, “I’ll be contacting my future spirit though radio waves which I have modified to travel through the ether and the magnetism. It’s not magic, it’s science mixed with illusion. My future self can merely look up the answers on the UWW (Universal Wide Web), so it will be 99.9% accurate."

The artist drones on. “I owe a lot to Tesla and Mesmer who did much of the grunt work. I just put it together with a bit of spit, polish and quantum theory. And don’t worry, the device will not be using that much radium — we wouldn't want another Atlantis.”

In addition to the Oracle, the exhibition will showcase some of Vile's most recent masterpieces, many featuring subjects from other dimensions and the spirit world, such as "Ghost Cat." The exhibit will be set up much like a museum — not the modern institutions that misappropriated the name — but the true turn of the century educational facilities which displayed a variety of objects of intrinsic value and immense interest to the public.

Works which are for sale will include not only the current value, but the future value as well, courtesy of the Oracle.

“I believe the public is sick of these quacks who label themselves as, artists — taking them for a ride. So you millionaire mountebanks better take heed, I’m aware of your temporary cons and I’m going to shake things to the very foundation,” swears Vile on a stack of Bibles.

Oracle Of Vile

One Night Only Saturday May 30th

7 p.m. - 11 p.m.

Tangent Gallery

715 E. Milwaukee St. Detroit

Staff writer Lee DeVito opines weekly on arts and culture for the Detroit Metro Times.

Lee DeVito

Leyland “Lee” DeVito is the editor in chief of Detroit Metro Times since 2016. His writing has also been published in CREEM, VICE, In These Times, and New City. He once asked porn star Stormy Daniels to spank him with an issue of Metro Times. She obliged.

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