7 Obnoxious Things You'll Hear People Saying to Sound Smart at Bushwick Open Studios

© Halley Choiniere / Alamy

Bushwick Open Studios, aka the time when Brooklyn's most Brooklyn-y artists open their studios to the Brooklyn-y public, is this weekend. Wander around the borough's new bohemia this weekend, and you’ll find more than 500 artists with their work on display.

For all the interesting art and interested viewers, Bushwick Open Studios is as much a social event as anything, so expect a handful of people who are pretty much just there to show how into art they are. These blowhards can be identified by any of the following phrases:

1. "I feel like this piece is too grounded in futurity to be relevant now, you know?"

Let's start with "I feel like," the humblebrag of the pseudo-intellectual. This guy had the words prepared in advance and was waiting for a chance to use them, but he wants you to feel like he's speaking from the heart right now. And also, nobody needs the word futurity. Just say the future. It's the same thing.

2. "This artist is just too cerebral about the post-postmodern aesthetic."

This isn't Scrabble; you don't get points for adding more letters. Say that the piece feels a little self-conscious and move on with your life.

3. "I love the way this sculpture exists within the dialectics of space and gesture."

Translation: I skimmed Hegel in college, and I like the sound of my voice. Now nod and tell me I'm right. This statement is irrefutable, but only because it's meaningless.

4. "I love the way the aporia here forces us to confront our cognitive dissonance about the human condition."

This woman might as well be taking a psych textbook, flipping to random pages, pointing at the words and saying them.

5. "I'm uncomfortable with how meta-aware this piece is of its own derivativeness."

For one thing, cut the "meta." It's not adding anything, and it's betraying your windbaginess. And stop overusing derivative. It doesn't show you know art history; it shows you want to show how much art history you think you know.

6. "I just keep getting distracted by the way the phenomenological experience falls short of its intellective objective."

Let's ignore the unnecessary syllables and obnoxious word choice. This woman basically just said, "I know more about what the work wanted to do than the work itself does." She doesn't.

7. "I'm impressed with the transfiguration of the commonplace here."

The Transfiguration of the Commonplace is just the title of an essay by Arthur Danto, the guy who coined the term "art world." If you're going to try, try harder.

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