Originally Posted by lawyerdad
Matt, of the four examples you posted I also prefer the Long. I have trouble giving a useful answer to questions like this. To refer back to the Pollock discussion, a good artistic work of pretty much any "school" has a presence and energy that are powerful. I find examples of this in many works that likely would be characterized as "minimalist". There's also a lot of mediocrity and schlock grouped under the same label. If asked whether I like Impressionism, I'd give the same answer. There are impressionist works of great beauty that are thrilling to experience in person. There are also impressionist, or wannabe impressionist, works that are horribly pallid and lifeless.
All true. Minimalism, I think, can make for very powerful visual impacts, particularly if it's on the "land art" scale. Its weaknesses are twofold: As a style, it very often demands a text or ready-made interpretation, along with the work itself, in order to make any feasible attempt at interpretation. Because of that, it can also be very imitable, in the sense that bad "minimalist" art is too easy to make. Good stuff is correspondingly harder to create, I should think, given the limited forms of expression offered by the style.