Is art really dying?

Is creativity and personal relationship with the medium no longer appreciated or respected?

Is artistic expression dismissed on profit related grounds?

Is art seen as a useless commodity?

Is is it the fault of the modern artist because he pushed the boundaries “way too far” by making art something they believe “anybody can do” ?

Is art really dying?

I just had an interesting conversation with a business man wich happens to be a good friend of mine. Every time I talk to him about art and artists (and I usually avoid that at any cost, because he has a utilitarian and pragmatic approach to life) he leaves me thinking, “ok so what if all buyers think like that? I will end up having to change careers and do something I don’t like !?” ! He manages every time to induce a state of “lucidity” and make me see things from another perspective, I like and appreciate that very much. But when he said “nice work ! I bet a computer can do that better, faster, and cheaper haha” I just flipped out ! I thought to myself, why am I even going to university for this? Why do I want this lifestyle and career in art, when these are the people I have to work with ! Why oh why couldn’t  I have been a contemporary with the big masters of the past, maybe in that time period, professional work BY HAND was still appreciated !! My only consolation is that they will introduce the time machine soon (just humour to keep me from sliding into a more unfortunate state) or that society will eventually change and the industrial revolution’s ideology and its damage will finally be discarded.

But these are the consumers right? these are the people who will, or will not reach into their pockets and appreciate my work, my passion. I wouldnt mind to never sell my work and just do it for myself, because that is my calling (as we know, Picasso didn’t sell too much during his life) that would be relaxing for me, not having to worry about anything related with marketing strategy. Nevertheless I have to try to make this creative drive work with society and try not to compromise my beliefs in that process. I can only hope that is possible.

Plan B can only be to teach other people how to explore their creative potential (assuming of course that they would still want to do so…)

Ken Robinson and Elisabeth Gilbert, both have a relevant presentation about the root, the cause that creates the current effect I was talking about:

>> Ken: Schools kill creativity (beware his wonderful humour )

>> Elisabeth: A new way to think of creativity

It’s hard to say it better than them, they are after all succesful academics, but there is this drive to say it yourself and in your own words. I guess the reason behind this is, that is the only way you can actually feel the relief that comes from the wonderful act of expression.

And so, at the risk of sounding relentless, I have to say that I know and have experienced every little thing they have discussed and have tried to write about it and focus my work around that understanding of creativity. I feel very comforted to know that there is a way to get out of the modern stereotypes, and try to just be what you feel like being. Getting rid of trying to fulfill the industrial/capitalist/political/economic/social need and demand, and instead focus on developing your inspiration and passion, and see where it takes you. I  will continue what I have started and will not give up, I will not dismiss what I have achieved, and what I strive to become.

“The art of writing is the art of discovering what you believe.” Gustave Flaubert

I rest my case.

Copyright Emanuel Ciobanica 2012 (c)

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