Art and Greatness -

14 June 2009
14.00 – 17.00
Muziekgebouw Amsterdam


Gustav Mahler would have once said to Arnold Schönberg: I don’t understand anything of your music, but I know that it is great art and therefore I offer you my support. But what is great art? How can we measure and recognize greatness? Is it about quality or quantity? Who determines what is great art? Is it the public, the art critic, the artist, the subsidy provider, the heirs? Do contemporary artists still strive towards greatness? Does the public still search for greatness in art? And if so, where can we find it? Prominent representatives from the world of art and art criticism discussed these matters after a masterclass of balletdanser Damian Woetzel.

Published in

Journal Nexus

Nexus 52

Wat is groot?

Wat is groot?

Dutch publication about the essence of greatness. How can we liberate ourselves from the banal and strive towards the beautiful and the good? How do you recognize what makes an artwork, a person, a life great?


United States, 1967

Damian Woetzel

ballet dancer and art promotor

United States, 1953

Heather Watts

dancer and muse of Balanchine

Ireland, 1958

Fiona Shaw

actress and theatre director

The Netherlands, 1954

René Boomkens

cultural scholar and policy maker

United Kingdom, 1944 - 2020

Roger Scruton

conservative philosopher and art expert

United States, 1955

Hal Foster

studies postmodern art and culture