Letter: Pioneer of billboard art

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The Independent Online
Sir: Paul McCann's article "Art goes public as students tap into billboard power" (14 April) typifies the cultural amnesia prevalent in the Nineties.

Billboard art, for want of a better term, was not pioneered by Barbara Kruger, but by the French radical painter Daniel Buren, in 1968. His stripe posters on the Paris Metro, Legends I and II, dealt with the cancelling of the commodity status of art. By evincing the gallery's stranglehold on meaning, he demonstrates that the work of art is governed as much by invisible economic factors as by cultural ones. The fact that art students are moving into the advertising business would suggest that today's artists are also governed primarily by economic factors.

M CRAIG

Rayleigh, Essex

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