Tuesday, January 22, 2008

A Rant: The Value of Art....

photo: Michelangelo's Pieta, Leonardo self portrait, Jackson Pollock, John Singer Sargent, Sponge Bob, and Glen Keane's immortalized Beast.
If you stumbled on a material piece of art on the street would you stop to admire it or maybe pick it up? does it provoke serious and quality thought? Is it beautiful (even in a horrific or disturbing sense) Is it made to stand the test of time, will it last? are the materials valuable? is the content timeless, or will it only be understood within the context of what is currently in fashion? Is it created with expert craftsmanship by an artist that knows and has studied the medium? In this way, do we admire the craftsmanship of this piece? Does it add or build upon to a rich tradition of thoughtfulness and quality?
Or, is it pretentious, meaningless, self-indulgent crap that has been deemed important by a cadre of "experts" or critics that obviously know way more than you, setting the importance and price. Or, does it exploit human tendencies to be drawn toward the overtly sexual, controversial, outrageous, or the "candylike shinyness" of new technologies (that often don't look all the great after a while). Is it purely entertainment, meant to be consumed, chewed up and spewed out in a fit of laughter? the only resemblance of aesthetic being it's ability to entertain and charm (has it's place perhaps, but can hardly be viewed as a lofty achievement)