I recently came across this great lecture by painter David Salle from 2010, speaking at AFA Christie's.
In opposition to most critical writing on the contemporary art coming out of NYC in the 80's, he asserts that while critics saw a distinct divide between the Neo-expressionist painters and the culturally and politically critical conceptual artists, these artists not only knew and worked along side each other, but didn't view their own work to be at odds with each other at all.
He makes his points by talking about an exhibition he co-curated that put the work in mention alongside each other for the first time. He also argues that successful painting, in his mind, blend pictorialism and presentationalism.
As someone who studied art history, but pursues painting, I find this really refreshing to hear. It's easy for critics and theorists to separate conceptual thinking and the practice of painting, but hard to reconcile in painting. Salle is a prolific writer and critic himself, so his ability to articulate his thoughts will be helpful for anyone who thinks about the critical value of their own work. Especially if they are a painter. He understands the theory, but it is a painter down to his core.