Conceptual Art in Britain: Room 2
To focus on reading rather than looking marked a huge shift for art. Language was to be used as art to question art. It would provide a scientific and critical device to address what was wrong with modernist abstract painting, and this approach became the basis for the activity of the Art & Language group, active from about 1967. They investigated how and under what conditions the naming of art takes place, and suggested that meaning in art might lie not with the material object itself, but with the theoretical argument underpinning it.
By 1969 the group that constituted Art & Language started to grow. They published a magazine Art-Language and their practice became increasingly rooted in group discussions like those that took place on their art theory course at Coventry College of Art. Theorising here was not subsidiary to art or an art object but the primary activity for these artists.