Like Art: Glenn O’Brien on Advertising
Karma, New York, 2017
9 1/4 × 6 1/2 inches
“Everybody wants a little luxury in life, whether it’s state-of-the-art high-tops or something large and 24 carat. It’s only human … Luxury is a sign of hope and belief in one’s self,” wrote Glenn O’Brien—the prolific writer, editor, creative director and New York staple—in a 1990 article for Artforum magazine. O’Brien’s words have proven decidedly true, as has much of his writing from the Artforum column on advertising he penned from 1984 to 1990. With prescience and panache, O’Brien wrote on such diverse topics as advertising in Japan, the Buy American campaign, Burger King, tobacco and alcohol ads, condoms, Max Headroom, computer games, the relationship between advertising and art, and much more. Now collected in their entirety for the first time, the 38 articles are accompanied by a preface by Jeffrey Deitch and an introduction from O’Brien, as well as a previously unpublished dialogue on consumer culture from the same period.