Monday, February 26, 2007

On the Nature of Art

On the Nature of Art

An Essay for Personal Reflection

For years, I have dwelt upon the subject of Art. I don't think you can be an "Artist" without spending some time trying to define it, and understand how you fit into that definition. In all the time I've pondered Art, I've never really recorded my thoughts; which is a shame, because you can't measure your growth without burying and digging up a mental time-capsule every now and then.

As it happens, I've recently modified my artistic philosophy. So I thought it would be prudent to record my old observations, and my new ones, and perhaps also spark an intellectual discussion. Or at least a discussion that doesn't involve people making chicken noises. That is, unless you're a chicken who wishes to add some valuable commentary.

Foundational Findings

When I went off to school, I was surprised to find there was a distinction between Fine Arts and Illustration. Not that I knew too much about either discipline, but before I arrived at school, I would have called both "Art". The general tone exhibited by the faculty and the students was that these were closely related — but separate — endeavors. The institution's own reasoning was that Fine Arts was artistic creation for self-fulfillment, whereas Illustration was artistic creation for a commercial audience, or for profit. But there was something more to it. The tone of a Fine Art piece and the tone of an Illustration were different. I eventually came to the conclusion, after many Art History classes, Graphic Design classes, discussions, and observations, that the basic difference between Fine Art and Illustration was their goal. I came to feel that Illustration sought to answer questions; whereas Fine Art intended to ask them.

This rang true to me, and what's more, it fell in line with my sensibilities as a designer. Design and Illustration walk hand-in-hand because both look to solve a problem. So this philosophy guided my work for many years, and I was quite happy to be answering questions and not asking them. But, as I mention above, my opinion has become somewhat modified of late.

Art The Rock On Which Thou Stumble

Modified is perhaps the wrong word. My view of what is Art has broadened. After all, Art is a concept that stretches beyond paintings, sculptures and other children of the gallery. Art is an action; Art is a task; Art is trash as well as treasure. My own definition of Art left no room for anyone other than Artists to create Art. What's more, it seemed to suggest that anything the Artist produced earned the title Art. An Artist can create a thousand paintings — are all of them Art? Is he successful 100% of the time?

My own personal experiences caused me to question my philosophy as well. I've never felt comfortable when referred to as an Artist. The majority of my work has always been a support structure for a message. Even now, the act of creating visual art that stands on its own feels very unnatural. And I definitely did not believe that I created Art 100% of the time. I'd say I create about 20 pieces that must be banished from the material world for every 1 success. What's more, the instances where I had created something I felt worthy of the title Art were usually short-lived. Within a year or two, what once felt perfect suddenly seemed to be packed with flaws and poor decisions (an unfortunate side-effect of progress, I suppose).

The subjective use of the title "Art" also led me to believe my philosophy was errant. My neighbors would call something Art that I would not. My dentist definitely has a different definition of Art than I. There are eminent scholars who have devoted their life to the study of Art, who I'm sure would roll their eyes derisively at the work I'd clutch lovingly to my breast. Would I be doomed to never call something Art until I had reached a similar echelon of study? Of course not. What I thought was Art, was at least Art to me.

So, after much mulling, I've arrived at a definition of Art that seems to resolve these inconsistencies.

I've come to think that we are all Artists. Or to put it more plainly, we all have the potential to be Artists. Because Art is not created; rather something created becomes Art. Something becomes Art when it is cherished; when we become attached to something for its uniqueness, for its faults and for its successes. An old fire hydrant, where the paint has cracked in a way you've never seen, where you stood and waited for the bus every day for 14 years, as familiar as family, can be as beautiful and unique and personal as a Monet. Those of us who are commonly termed Artists, are merely craftsmen, like a carpenter, or a plumber, or a journalist. We can choose to answer questions, or ask them; but neither direction is a guaranteed path to Art. Instead, if we're lucky, once in a while we do our job in such a way that it becomes unique, and it becomes loved for its uniqueness. Art is as often a product of accident as intent, and on the whole is mostly serendipitous.

Tea and Chit-Chat

I'm sure we all have different views on the nature of Art, a subject that has been hotly debated since the first caveman clubbed the other cavemen for insulting his precious Oblong Stone With Notch On End. I have no doubt that my arguments and thoughts above have been thoroughly explored and presented more eloquently by others (indeed, I do know that the Bauhaus artists had a similar belief that all artists were just craftsmen, and Art happened serendipitously). So, should you have thoughts of your own to share, or some insights or arguments against the concepts I present above, feel free to leave a comment or two.

Comments on this Article

There are currently 42 comments.

[ Add one of your own! ]

Ryan Terry

I completely agree with you. I also never heard the idea of illustration being an "answer" and fine art being a "question". How interesting. My view is that everything is art, but it just depends on how each person want to perceive it. Good, bad, total bullshit...whatever. It all comes down to stimulation I guess.


Yeah, I suspect my belief about the Fine Art/Illustration division was a reaction to accusations that pursuing Commercial Art was "selling out". I often wonder in what ways this philosophy has hurt/helped.


i'm teaching a modern poetry class, and we're working through the same questions. i've found it is very difficult to get college students to accept the idea of a poet as a craftsman, either because they feel that we all use language (and are therefore all poets) or because they feel that poets are like some subspecies fundamentally and biologically distinct from normal human language-users. and boy did they hate gertrude stein....


Perhaps they need an associated tool... like the "Poetry Hammer"... ;)


One of my drawing teachers in College used to teach us that illustration was when you were trying to tell a story, and art was obviously when you weren't.

Although that never sat well with me especially since some of the greatest artist in history created art that was a part of a story. For example most all christian art was art that was telling a story, however we hold these paintings, and buildings as relics in the art world and millions of people have traveled far and wide to view these pieces of art.

Your definition sounds sufficient to me, there are many illustrations that I would consider art, and many "pieces of art" that I would consider garbage.

I see art in movies, music, painting, drawing, sketches, printed material, on the web,photographs, and just in basic instances of my daily life.


Definitely true about christian art throughout history, excellent point :D

In fact, I just picked up a book a couple weeks ago that reveals even more storytelling than I was aware of before.


Well worded.

This broadens some of the college definitions that were crammed down my throat (art as unconscious and design as conscious). While I feel design is and has to be a conscious process of problem solving, I've never been comfortable with art needing to be an unconscious thing by definition. I'd like to think my higher-level thought, the thing that separates me from the average monkey, is capable of producing something that qualifies as art.


Cissy Strutt

Here in Australia over the past couple of years, the Media has begun referring to Sportsmen (rarely Women) as Artists. I am confronted by that. First, in this beautiful country Art is shat on from a great height, undervalued, underfunded. So why do they want to award these Heroes with the epithet Artist? And award them honorary Arts degrees. (Isn't it enough that they get a section of the newspaper, half the tv news, all the sponsorship.) And in what manner are they Artists. (Granted, a few of the World Cup Soccer games were things of Beauty.) Does my definition of Art require that it be made by an Artist? And if so, what defines an Artist? Your post is timely as I am overhauling old assumptions. (But SportsPlayers probably still won't make the cut.)


i love this post. definitely one of my favorites. and i think you put very eloquently what so many have struggled to say at all.

and i, for one, think you are an incredible artist. i tel people about you as often as i can, and i will surely forever cherish the art i've purchased and will purchase from you.

David VanDusen

Whenever this topic arises, I am reminded of a definition given in the Trans Siberian-Orchestra's biography. It doesn't neccesarily define art, but rather looks at the difference between bad, good, and great art. Perhaps, according to this definition, the "20 pieces ... for every 1" are considered, at least by you, to be bad art. But does that really mean that they are not art at all? Maybe the art is in the attempt and not the success.


I'm sure a whole load of hippies with black frames spectacles will all be close minded...because after all in this day and age one simply must be open minded towards everything or be admonished for eternity in those little Q-tip heads sticking out of their ripped turtlenecks (with the black rimmed glasses).

anyways, on to my point. I still fail to recognize anything in the MOMA as "art". If a paint splatter can be art..or a dot in the middle on a 20x20 ft canvas can be art...or a pile of lightbulbs can be art, anything can be and I prefer to narrow the definition simply because I am so tired of talentless worthless failures who must express themselves through intensely personal physical displays think highly of themselves and look down on others who "dont get it mannnnn"

I draw DICK JOKES kevin. DICK AND COCK JOKES. am I an artist? you're fucking right I am.

(im still waiting to create something I actally LIKE though)


Testmonkey - Wow - I don't think I've ever pursued any drawing unconsciously. Though I don't think I've done anything unconsciously. Except breathing. And maybe snacking.

As for higher-level thought's contribution to art...I don't know... that gorilla art and elephant art is gobbled up by the public.

Cissy - Well, there's definitely athletes whose performance in their sport could be considered Art. But I'll probably miss out on a lot of that art. Unless it's that's skiing where you shoot stuff. I can't get enough of that.

Martha - Thanks! That makes me feel good - I was a little hesitant about posting something so possibly pompous.

David - That's a very interesting interpretation. Yes - I suppose the "20 pieces for every 1" would fall in the bad art category. But for me, those are the pieces where I've made such poor decisions, or big mistakes, that they don't express the message I intend.

But then, I do believe that art comes out of accidents, and the flaws can sometimes be what attracts you to a piece. So I suppose the 20 pieces of my "bad art" could theoretically come to be loved as art.

Dammit. I wish I didn't incinerate all those...

Bandy - I think what you need out of MOMA is abstract art that's a reaction to dick jokes :D


I have the exact same set of dice. Though mine applies to dating.


That was a good read. Much to chew on... I like other people's take on this question... I don't think it's pompous at all.

People like to ask you questions like "what is art?" in the same way those same people used to ask you "what do you want to be when you grow up?" While I enjoy mulling both questions (as well as the question "WHEN will you grow up?) more and more I just find myself answering, "I have absolutely no idea."

It's an exhausting question, really... and kind of annoying, honestly, unless you have a free morning, a nice cup of coffee and a pretty view to stare out the window at philosophically.

I've come to accept that only *I* can decide what only *I* see as art. And that applies to my own work as well. When it's right, a big bell goes off ringing somewhere deep down, and that's more of an answer than I've ever found in any of my free mornings spent with coffee, staring out at a pretty view.

Unfortunately, I don't speak Bell, so I can't quite translate that 'answer' just yet. I think they offer a course at Cambridge, though...



Charles - I had a similar set too. Though mine were more like these.
Herocomplex - Heh, heh... that's an interesting way to describe how you work. Nice!


Any of these three can crossover into the other and some pieces can possibly be all three. Some artists have gotten their work used commercially eventhough that was not the original intent. Some people hang up design or illustration on their walls as art.

The only constant is that there's always an audience and objective and this context determines what you call it when discussing it.

I have seen plenty of "art" that is well designed and lots of design or illustration that is... "well-arted" to definitively categorize them. :)


True observation, Taadang... and with your permission I'll be using "well-arted" as an adjective from now on!

Sam Blakeley

Exhausting is a good description for something so complex and dynamic!

People get so worked up over being correct. The greatest thing about Art is that it is personal. We percieve art based on emotions. Something just feels right and it creates pleasure in our minds.
People often forget that art doesn't have to be painted. A blind person can feel a sculpture and feel the same sensations as others. I think Art challenges the perceived boundaries that everybody has.

Even in trying to describe what I mean, I've deleted paragraph after paragraph because its not something that can be described in black and white.

I play soccer and read what Cissy wrote. I understand what you are saying Cissy - that somebody who paints or writes is doing something completely different to sombody in a practised sport... however when you practise that much, when you play in the moment and execute every single pass, every touch and execute it to point of perfection, well - that is like moving art because it excites that person watching enough to be blown away with amazment. In fact anything that makes you react in that way could be considered another definition of art? Maybe? I might not be explaining myself clearly, but I hope you understand more of what I mean? Can anyone add to this?


Since your work is so "well-arted," you do not need my permission. Well-art away my friend. :D


Excellent article Kevin, and very enjoyable reading everyone's opinion. I am of the opinion that everyone's view about art is right. Just as anything can be considered art (be it the human body, or a piece of dog turd on the sidewalk that is curled in an interesting way that makes you go --ooo! look at that!) As far as I'm concerned - Life=Art.


Sam - No, I think you made your point nicely, Sam. :D

Taadang - I'm thinking about well-arting some toast. Mmmm....

Chris - Once, on a meditative walk, I found inspiration in a dog turd that had a quarter in it. Then, remembering that a dog could not pass a quarter through its colon, I realized that it was human feces, and my inspiration quickly turned into disgust. That's the last time I visit City Hall.

Rob Weychert

Good read, Kevin. These days I tend to think art is entirely in perception, which is really another way of summing up your thoughts. So if someone creates something with the intention of it being art, it is art. And if someone views something as art that was never intended to be art, well, now it's art. I suppose someone who aims to be an artist is trying to create things with a firm likelihood of being perceived as art, and it's the wide variety of potential motives that splinters the definition. Does the work seek to question or answer? Is the artist motivated by financial gain? Is this art tailored to the tastes of a specific audience? Why? When? How?

At the end of the day, the answers to these questions will direct the art to its rightful home(s), and the artist really has no control over that. The marketing people do. They're the ones that steer the conversation that surrounds art, be it with a provocative artist's statement, an ad in a trade magazine, or a ranting vagrant on the corner. Which is why I think that the most ostensibly successful artists (financially or otherwise) have one or both of these two things on their side: dumb luck or marketing expertise.

The rest of us just experience the art, love it or hate it, and hopefully do our best to steer our own conversations.


and iggy pop's "lust for life" is used to sell carnival cruises...


It was a natural choice. The previous Kathy Lee Gifford jingle was the audio equivalent of rolling around in shattered glass.

the Brightside

Back in my aesthetics class in college, the (now-bastardized by my memory) definition we eventually came to was "a message skillfully encoded by a practitioner in some sort of social medium"... or something like that. There is a tendency now especially to celebrate "found" or "outsider" art that somewhat obviates the need for the skillful-encoding part, shifting the burden of the definition more onto the critic or curator as opposed to the creator (that is, if found art is real art--and I make no value judgments about that, I am merely using an example--then it must in this case be art because someone authoritative found it and recognized it as such, not because it was created as such).

My own definition of art I'm not sure totally jives with that, but I'm not totally sure I've developed my own determination of what creates art. Writing and photography are my media of choice so God knows what I'll wind up developing in the aesthetic.

There are a few paintings in the MOMA I'd defend, Bandelin, if only because I like Kandinsky. "Composition VII" is quite the painting.


I'm currently engaged in creating a piece of 'public art' and that has me ruminating along the lines of your ruminations.

What I found myself doing was examining bad public art and trying and work out what it is, exactly, that makes it bad. This has been generally quite illuminating. On this basis, I have to disagree with you on your point that 'we are all artists'. Some people are definitely NOT artists. Unless you count bad artists, and then, well, that's like saying we're all brain surgeons.

Having said that, I have collected examples that some people who we agree are 'artists' have made some pretty major public artistic faux pas.

So, in my opinion, there is a certain... 'something'... that makes people artists. My feeling is that a artist is someone who has an ability to re-examine the world afresh and then convey that re-examination to others in a way that affects them in some profound way, be that awe, humour, horror, disgust, delight or any of a number of other deep responses.

But importantly it has to be something that is under the control of the artist - there are plenty of pieces of bad public art in Sydney that provoke deep feelings of humour, horror and/or disgust but I don't think that's what the artist intended...


I have to disagree with you on your point that 'we are all artists'. Some people are definitely NOT artists. Unless you count bad artists, and then, well, that's like saying we're all brain surgeons.

Well... I hold that 'we all have the potential to be artists', even if it's just accidentally creating something someone finds artistically fulfilling. Like King Kong became the toast of 1930's high-society by accidentally being an enormous killer ape.


King Kong certainly was a Master of the Enormous Killer Ape genre. No disagreement there.

Dan Grove

It may be redundant by now, but I have yet to say it myself, so here goes: This is one fan-friggen'-tastic webite!!!

As to what art is, could a possible parameter of art be this: "something done well"? I am thinking of the usage of the word in "the art of biscuit toasting" or "the art of jelly lathering", etc. This seems to imply that there is some level of craftmanship/experience with the materials/head knowledge but also a certain interaction with the subject that can only come from the individual, perhaps his aesthetic bent.

I mean, sure, a toddler can slap on the grape jelly as well as Mack the Knife, but certainly there's a kind of economy of movement, or beauty in the way Mack holds the spreader, carefully observing the edges, evening the density, and noting viscocity.

Also, as to the viewing experience of art, I am finding that I prefer to ask these three questions:

  • 1) What is the artist trying to say?

  • 2) How well did they say it? and finally

  • 3) Was it worth saying?

  • The latter is the big trip, but I think that by withholding an aesthetic or moral judgment until the first two have been observed can help one to grapple with the latter as well as avoid dismissing something based upon gut reaction (though this is sometimes a good clue, don't get me wrong, one's time is valuable).

    So, art then would be a-moral, as it is something done well, based upon the first two questions, and only after that discussion could anything further be said as to the third question: Was is worth saying?

    Let me know what you guys think.


    Good words Kevin, good words.

    My personal favorite caveman painting is “polar bear in snow storm”. Very “Pre-Modern Art”.

    I went to school for Illustration, and I also felt that terrible divide between fine arts and design. The illustrators always seemed to be living in two worlds; half in graphic design and half in painting. After a while I came to very similar line of thought as you have (although I don’t think I ever could have phrased it quite as well).

    So let me ask you this; my own private work is mostly considered illustration. It doesn’t really ask any questions, it is more about creating other worlds (I like to consider them reflections of our own). However, I think it is indeed art. The work itself has given me purpose, it brings me a great sense of fulfillment, and I know that it has helped me grow as a person. Can art be about defining “who we are”? Or, does this in itself ask the question “who are we”?

    I don’t know…. I need sleep.


    Dan said...

    As to what art is, could a possible parameter of art be this: "something done well"? I am thinking of the usage of the word in "the art of biscuit toasting" or "the art of jelly lathering", etc.

    Yeah - that's a good way to put it. I was considering the usage of art like this when I mention it could be a task or an action.

    As for the three-step viewing experience of art (I edited your steps so that they were in an easier-to-read list), I think that's an excellent way to go about it. It definitely touches upon one of most important steps in appreciating art, which is the viewer putting in a little effort on their own end.

    All art has its immediate aesthetic value, which generates the "gut reaction" you speak of, but beyond the initial appearance, all Art has a message that can only be understood in the right context. So many artistic movements are reactions against previous artistic movements (and their artistic theories), and without that understanding of the previous movement, it's harder to figure out "What the artist is trying to say".

    When you think of it that way, trying to appreciate more recent artistic movements can be very much like trying to put together a piece of IKEA furniture by only looking at the very last step.

    Wow... you've jarred my brain, Dan!

    Gerren said...

    My personal favorite caveman painting is "polar bear in snow storm". Very "Pre-Modern Art".

    Hehehe... :D

    Regarding your private work, I'd definitely say it's art if you're attached to it emotionally. And even by my original, schoolboy, definition of Art (which I'm not sure I'd apply anymore), I'd say you were creating Art if you're leaving questions open to the viewer.

    As for whether something that defines "Who We Are" can qualify it as Art, I feel this is true. I know if I came across a piece, or created a piece, that I felt communicated "Who I am", I would become emotionally attached, and by my own beliefs I'd call that Art.

    You bring up an interesting aspect of Art when you talk about it defining "Who We Are". I find it fascinating that Art works as a medium for the artist to communicate as much about themselves as about their subject matter. What they've chosen to depict, and how they chose to do it, can often give you a better idea of who they are than page after page of diary entries. But equally interesting is how that same piece causes the viewer, whether they know it or not, to find out about themselves. It forces them to ask themselves questions like "Do I like this color?", "Do I like this subject matter?", and even perhaps, "Why do I or don't I like these particular things."

    From that point of view, it almost seems the viewer can only see art as something that defines "Who We Are", since the for the artist it can only define "Who I Am."

    Of course, the artist could be depicting his definition of how he views humanity, including himself. In which case... "Who We Are" would apply.

    Ah, semantics... you make discussing Art more difficult than it already is.


    "Ah, semantics. You make discussing Art more difficult than it already is"

    My bad. :0b


    Whoops! I didn't mean you make it more difficult, Gerren. I meant Semantics make it more difficult :D



    I think your essay is very good, and I think reflection on this subject is always worthwhile, because I strongly suspect our responses to the question of "what art is" will change, personally and culturally, as long and as often as we do. I also strongly suspect that it is an important question for us to consider, and that the reflection is as productive as the response. Sorry, all, for the length of what follows here; I didn't have time to cut more (and I did cut, if you can believe it!).

    Personally, I think that the attitude Chris asserts -- "As far as I'm concerned - Life=Art." -- is behind the reason that many people don't like the works in the MOMA. I think that art requires more than enjoyment and appreciation to be considered... well, important, in the sense that your teachers seemed to imply. Think back to writing on art that you have read which discusses the questions of the universal and the particular. Great art, many say, is intentional creation which manifests an instantiation of a universal truth, which strikes those who encounter it as being a specific description of a global condition. This realization allows the recipient to move in some way outside of themselves, and encounter the people, objects, and phenomena of the world with greater profundity.

    Much modern art is often concerned with extremely subtle responses to complex physical phenomena. Those 20x20 canvases with a single dot are often creating, let's say, an environmental condition, or playing with the ideas of empty space and proportion, or working in specific ways upon the viewer's faculties of concentration, sensation, or perspective. The difficulty is often that the artist who creates such works is highly attuned to subtle responses and visceral feedback which are created in a specialized audience -- consider a musician with perfect pitch listening to an average player or instrument. I would not notice (or be aware of noticing) variations in tone and hue which the pitch-perfect-listener would consider glaring. In just such a way might a visual artist trained in proportion, tone, degree, &c. might be aware of the causes of that feeling in their gut at the placement of a dot on the 20x20 canvas.

    Saying that Life=Art demeans both life and art, and encourages people live carelessly. I am not a world -class physicist, musician, painter, sportsman... or anything else, for that matter! However, if I THINK that I am, I won't appreciate the astonishing nature of those people's intentional achievements. That would make a mockery of both them and me.

    Happy accidents are only that; they are not art unless they were intentional. The cute kitten letting fall it's dozing head on YouTube is not performing for the viewers; it is just falling asleep.

    Anyway, thanks for the thought-provoking post.


    Good argument, Andrew! Though in my definition I certainly feel there's room for art to happen accidentally, you have a point — successful and intentional artistic creations are perhaps greater because they require skill and expertise, without relying on luck as a crutch.


    Freud also had an interesting perspective on art. It is too long to post here but it is up on my blog ( if anyone cares to read it. I found it to be well put.


    Interesting read, Aditya - thanks!


    After having painted for many years, I've come to the conclusion that it's not the final result that makes an artist; but the process. A few deft strokes can differentiate between an amature and an artist. Unfortunately it's something the general public rarely see.

    Or, art can be any crap that anyone dares to call art, and god help you if you ever argue that a red smear on an otherwise blank canvas is not art. Society needs art, unortunately art for art's sake has taken over. We currently live in a world where anything can be art and there are thousands of Art graduates ready to argue to the death against anyone who claims otherwise.

    In the end the main definition of art comes down to one thing - money. If you can create it and sell it, it's art. It's a sad state of affairs, but that's the way society is... after all, where would art be if no one was willing to pay for it?


    A few deft strokes can differentiate between an amature and an artist.

    Hear, hear! I've noticed that the work I get attached to the most are the pieces that felt like them came together in only a few steps; almost like an accident.


    Wonderful post.

    Wayne said, ...and boy did they hate gertrude stein....:D

    ...but she 'spoke'.

    That has always been my own primary definition. Art speaks, whether you judge the value of that by how many hear (in which case you'll be off browsing auction results to inform your collecting), or by how deeply the voice resonates regardless of the number that 'hear'.

    The effect which monetary and commercial realities have on our relationships with art are often very unfortunate, yet they can also create a form of democracy.

    The traditional definitions of illustration, or 'commercial art' in general, represent, among other things, a measure of our inability to trust ourselves and one another. Hence the idea that if one is to be 'true to one's art', one must prove it by starving.

    (Who sees no contradiction in displaying Egon Shiele and Renee Grau with equal prominence, albeit in different environments in terms of ambience.)


    Interesting insights, Vera!

    Though, I don't suppose you could expand on how the definitions of commercial art represent our inability to trust ourselves and one another? I'm not sure I see the connection...


    More of my related personal views:

    The trust issue, as I see it, parallels a contradictory human relationship to money that is not uncommon, and which can be visualized in any pair of opposite extremes: love/hate, good/evil, moral/immoral, etc. Subjective pairs such as trash/treasure or pillar/scourge (of a society) are often opposingly identified by opposing factions (or sectors of that society). I also view these types of pairs in a yin/yang form.

    The 'price' an artist pays to produce his/her work has long and often been one measure of its value, especially since most people look to experts for guidance and explanation of the basis for valuation. Also, patrons of the arts have traditionally been the ruling classes, and although we like to imagine a classless society, it hasn't fully, er, materialized yet.

    A truly egalitarian view of art (in my personal opinion) would totally disrupt traditional and current valuation processes. Achieving this would require that we all develop and trust our own powers of judgement far more than we typically do, and the extent to which we trust ourselves is, imo, a determining factor in how much we are able to trust others. This is relevant to me because I consider art highly personal.

    If this still sounds cryptic, I apologize... writing out my entire philosophy of life would take some time and would be too lengthy for commentary/conversation (and probably even for a series of blog posts).


    [ Back to Top ]

    Recent Articles

    [ Visit Article Archives ]

    Who Carols Mojo and the Leaves MUSTACHE! The Symbol For Jerk Interpreting Excelsior Dead Love The Big Sandwich Mojo The Bounty Hunter Sketchbook 22 Live! Six-Penny Anthems II