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Party Lines Slideshow: Ryan McNamara, James Franco, Paz de La Huerta, and More at Rob Pruitt’s 2010 Art Awards

Vulture caught up with artist Ryan McNamara at Rob Pruitt’s 2010 Art Awards, and he helped us make sense of the unique proceedings. "I really hope it’s a joke," McNamara explained. "But then it’s funny, because there are these amazing shows nominated. So, it’s kind of not a joke. It's great: Rob Pruitt has this bizarre position in which it’s all a farce, but at the same time, there are legends nominated." Were you nominated? "Yeah! I had two campaign videos and I staged a rally. And people were like, 'This is disgusting.' And I was like, 'It’s a joke! It’s a joke about a joke, right?' So this is a fucking joke. Let’s have some fun. Art is the most ridiculous thing. You know, everyone in New York kind of didn’t fit in places before. And then you’re in the position where you’re suddenly supposed to know how to do this kind of thing." And you end up building the same social hierarchies you ran away from? "Yeah. But now we get to be on top."

Photo: Patrick McMullan