Thursday, July 28, 2011

Art For Our Sake

c. Jonathan Hillyer Photography Inc.
courtesy High Museum of Art, Atlanta

Deep into the dog days of Florida's summer, afternoon finds me momentarily at odds with my calling. I should be painting but the drip-dry heat chases me from the studio. My inner editor advises catching up on art books but workers arrive to install a back door. My last refuge for today becomes the computer screen.

One of the first things to jump out at me is how call to artist sites have changed. Scanning an updated list of shows on the Cafe site gave me a chalk art show in El Paso, an exhibition celebrating Edgar Allan Poe in Boston, a photography show about the Flint Hills in Kansas, a ceramic cup competition in Kansas City, an energy conservation art exhibition in Seattle and a competition celebrating Latino, African and Asian heritage.

In my quick glimpse, only one show made a call to contemporary painters - the Portland 2012 Contemporary Biennial. Unfortunately, the exhibition is limited to Oregon artists.

Even at the local level, there has been a remarkable increase in the number of thematic and multi-media exhibitions. Some of the themes have included dogs, tea cups, tiny art, and psychological states. And it is no longer de riguer to attend just art exhibitions. There must also be something interesting going on - a poetry slam, a charity auction, wine tastings, music concerts.

Pity the poor person who stumbles into a gallery of beautiful and challenging paintings and has nothing but the silence of her thoughts to fall back on.

4 comments:

decomondo said...

Hello Denis;
I like your comments; I find them very interesting.
They make me reflect on the position of the artist in modern times and it seems to me that, in a sense, this places us in the past, among the street and travelling artists, when the art itself was not enough to attract the (large) audience, but there was also an obligation to entertain.

It's not exactly "The Grand Tour", do you agree? But without them, what would remain on the streets?

I also think that the environment in which an artist lives and objects that surround him are shaped by his creativity and that they can have the uniqueness of his other works, both as a composition and as unique items.

Where is the border?
It seems to me that it moves constantly. On the other hand, the opulence of the offer often leads to confusion. At the end I think I would prefer the silence of my thoughts :)
Thanks for sharing, Denis.

Denis Gaston said...

Thanks for your well spoken comments. Art, in a sense, is part entertainment. That is well and good, but I despair that it too often becomes the only factor.
For me, looking at art is, first of all, a private conversation.

Thesis Writing said...

I’m glad I found this site. I have read your article and found it to be very useful especially for people who are not sure of which path to take. In life, we need to constantly be motivated. We have to motivate ourselves as well as others to keep us from feeling worthless.
In this world there are so many things to think about and sometimes stress gets in the way and we end up losing faith in ourselves. But if you will follow the rules of motivation, it will surely be your number one best friend for it will guide you along the way.
I hope to read some more of your tips and thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Denis Gaston said...

Thanks for your comment.
Stress is something we all have and it often gets in the way of creativity. But in the end my main motivation is the huge need to make art.