Artwriting is a philosophical study of the history of recent American art criticism. David Carrier explores the writings of Clement Greenberg, Ernst Gombrich, Michael Fried, and Adrian Stokes, concluding that their interpretations have been superseded in part by an awareness that today the role of criticism can be understood only in relation to the art market system in which critics, artists, dealers, collectors, and museums play a role. Carrier argues that art criticism cannot arrive at a consensus about what makes a "true" interpretation of an artwork. Criticism can only appeal to the persuasiveness of alternative critical narratives in determining an artwork's meaning and value. By becoming self-conscious about the inherently suasive role of artwriting, successful contemporary art criticism achieves persuasiveness in the marketplace.

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