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Dec. 8th, 2007

I am at the close of my first semester as an art student and feel as though my view of art has become unjustly negative.  The last few months have been intense -- magnified like a pressure-cooker by the startling revelation of Martin Beck, a graduate alumni at my school who stated that, "those for whom art is their life become extremely dull."  I'm beginning to question whether art is really the noble pursuit that it appears to be.  I began to think that perhaps art is full of the same paradoxes as life.  More specifically, that who enter college as artists, only to change their major in the course of time are the ones who preserve the basest form and enjoyment of art.  It's the ones who continue in the art profession who ultimately sell out -- not because they're corrupt or even because they're jaded (although that tends to happen anyway) -- but because they're forced to sell themselves to make a living.  The once pure and unadulterated passion becomes tarnished, and that is inevitable when you make a living doing what you love.

The following is a conversation I had with a friend over lunch.  A little armchair economics minus the economics.

What is Art?
Defining something that doesn't make sense.

Art as a Metaphor

Art is creative bullshit.

Art is aesthetically pleasing crap.

Contemporary art is glorified crap.

Performance art is an excuse for exhibitionists to strip naked.

Art is an inventive channel to express everything that does not belong with common sense.

Miscellaneous Art

Art is like an itch that won’t go away.

Art is like Vaseline.  When you put it on, it sticks to everything.

Art is like a black pawn that wants to be white.  No matter what color it is, it’s still a pawn and it’s still going to get trashed.

Art as Food

Art is like bread.  They can be white, brown, or yellow, but when you put them in the toaster, they all get burned.

Art is like an unkosher dumpling.  It’s thin and delicate on the outside, but inside it’s just vulgar.

Art as Sex

Art is like going out at night looking to get laid.  Sometimes you get lucky, and sometimes you don’t.

Art is like prostitution.  The most successful artist has mastered the art of selling herself.

Art is like having sex when your brain has turned to mush.  It doesn’t take any intelligence to do.

Art is like a Las Vegas prostitute: a luxury you can't afford.

Art is like a whore that has reached her prime: it becomes cheapened over time.

Art as a Lesson in Futility

Art is like an addict coming out of an ether binge.  Any effort to resist is futile.

Contemporary art is like counting the hairs on your head.  It’s (f******) pointless.

Real art is like counting the hairs on your head.  It’s (f******) impossible.


Dec. 9th, 2007 08:21 am (UTC)
hmmm. interesting observations. and, in my case, quite relevant, as this is my first semester of art school as well.

at the least, your post is of a different sort than what usually meanders on to the "recent entries" stage, which i find rather refreashing.


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