From the Studio

  • The state of the art world, part one

    I make the art, I don't explain it and I don't always understand it. It troubles me to go to museums and galleries with friends who have been immensely successful in their own work, are highly intelligent yet start shaking in their boots when asked to discuss what they're looking at.

    "I didn't major in art history," said one. "But I know what I like. Horses and boats. And I like landscapes and old portraits." 

    "I don't understand contemporary art," said another. "I don't want to appear stupid but I don't understand why it is art. And why is it OK to sit across from an old woman with a facelift in a long dress who just stares at you? And there was a long line of people waiting to do this? At the Museum of Modern Art?"

    With all the immense amount of web information and updates about the artworld, the buying frenzy, the art fairs and search for either very new or very old talent we seem to have forgotten that intimidation of the average museum goer is bound to happen and  the disconnect between artist and viewer is most definitely taking  a hit.

    Those of us who are making the art and are given to the highs and lows that it entails should be concerned about how loud we need to shout in order to be heard.  In the past it was enough to trot out some skill and whisper,  hope that someone, anyone, understood. Problem now is that we have intimidated people so much that they require proof of their own validity to even begin the conversation.