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Robert Frank Gabriel

13 Days Ago

Art Critics

In the upcoming days, I will talk about Art Critics from the past to the present.

If YOU have a favorite Art Critic, please tell us who he/she is.

One of my favorite Art Critics is Sister Wendy Beckett.

"Differently from art history, there is not an institutionalized training for art critics (with only few exceptions); art critics come from different backgrounds and they may or may not be university trained. Professional art critics are expected to have a keen eye for art and a thorough knowledge of art history. Typically the art critic views art at exhibitions, galleries, museums or artists' studios and they can be members of the International Association of Art Critics which has national sections. Very rarely art critics earn their living from writing criticism."

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Charles Pierre Baudelaire; then again Donald Kuspit; then once further, Paul Gauguin would have been interesting to read.

 

Lisa Kaiser

13 Days Ago

My son, he has plaques from his education saying he has excellence in criticism. He's coached me a lot.

 

David Bridburg

13 Days Ago

My favorite art critic is my dad. He goes off in directions I never would expect from anyone. Not a single compliment. Totally his own biases.

Dave

 

Ronald Walker

13 Days Ago

My cat from several years ago was by far my harshest critic, left a work in my studio ran into the house to get something, on my return there was a giant pile of vomit right in the center of the work. At the time I was not too pleased but in hindsight I think he improved the work.

 

Lisa Kaiser

13 Days Ago

ROFL, Ronald.

 

Abbie Shores

13 Days Ago

Eeeuwww

 

Loretta Kaltenhauser

13 Days Ago

For the most part this old joke is how I feel about art critics:

A young, up-and-coming artist was exhibiting his work for the very first time.

A world-famous art critic was there and he came up to the young artist and asked him, “Would you like my opinion on your work?”

“Yes”, replied the artist.

“It’s worthless,” said the critic.

The artist said, “Yes, I know, but tell me anyway.”



Ba da Bing ! Seriously though, my best art critic is my husband who has been a professional artist for over 40 years ~ when I first started painting he would always give me an honest and helpful critique. After painting full time for 6 years, I still value and respect his opinion, however, I pretty much know if it's good or not and he just confirms it - lol

 

LOL, Loretta. Your old joke is how I feel about "most" critics - art, theater, film, music, literature, etc. Ha, even home decor. My wife and I see a movie (at least) every week. If we believed the critics we would have missed some incredible (to us) films. The adage, "to each his own" comes to mind...


---------------
~ Bill
BillSwartwout.com

 

Floyd Snyder

13 Days Ago

Ronald!!

That was like the Wall Street stock picker some years back.

As the story goes...

Someone did a study of all the stock picking analyst and then he took the Wall Street Journal stock pages and lined the floor of a cage with a bird in it. The first stock that the first dropping landed on from the bird was the one they used to compare to all of the top analyst's stock picks.

At the end of the study, the bird's stock picks were as good as the average of all of the high paid stock pickers on wall street.

To me, both art and movie critics are probably no more likely to get it right than that bird.

 

Roger Swezey

13 Days Ago

From selling my "art" for over 4 decades , the General Public, with their thumbs up, and their fists opening up a few greenbacks, are by far , to me, the most insightful critics.

 

Robert Frank Gabriel

13 Days Ago

Plowing right ahead...lol...

SISTER WENDY BECKETT A Catholic nun and prolific art critic is said to be "the best talker on art since Lord Clark gave us Civilisation", She is the star of two hit PBS series, Sister Wendy's Odyssey and Sister Wendy's Grand Tour.

"Sister Wendy decided in 1980 to pursue the subject that had fascinated her since childhood: art. Making this part of her vocation, she began working from reproductions and postcards, corresponding by letter with art galleries and museums around the world."

"Sister Wendy made her US debut on public television and that same year The New York Times described her as "a sometime hermit who is fast on her way to becoming the most unlikely and famous art critic in the history of television."

ME...
I derive great pleasure from viewing Sister Wendy visiting art museums and giving us her excellent and insightful insides on Art.

Sister Wendy passed away at age 88, 26 December 2018...

Below is one of her TV shows on ART. It's wonderful.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBv0HezlOBw

 

David Bridburg

13 Days Ago

Robert,

That was very good. It is art history. Not sure that it is art criticism. Or that Sister Wendy is an art critic. I would need to see more that is not on history.

Dave

 

Carel Schmidlkofer

13 Days Ago

I loved watching Sister Mary. Truly someone who understood art IMO.

 

Loretta Kaltenhauser

13 Days Ago

Just viewed the Sister Wendy video and thoroughly enjoyed it. I must confess I had never seen her show before although I had heard of her. Such a sweet soul and such knowledge and passion for art ~ thanks for sharing Robert!

 

Mario Carta

13 Days Ago

Never met one.

 

Robert Frank Gabriel

13 Days Ago

Mario,
If you have access to YouTube, you can see and listen to many art critics yammering away on Art.

 

Chuck Staley

13 Days Ago

Like @Roger Swezey said.

 

Mario Carta

13 Days Ago

Now why would I want to go and do something like that Robert, listen to yammering? Lol!

 

David Bridburg

13 Days Ago

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGmaXK3-7Bc

Robert,

Yammering is a good word for it. But remember Sister Wendy is posing strictly for a camera reading her lines slowly. He is here just going off, rambling. He can be much more organized.

I prefer some samplings of his writings a bit more.

I have reached out to him, but am totally ignored by him. I think any of us would take the free publicity.

Dave

 

Robert Frank Gabriel

12 Days Ago

David,
Thanks for posting JERRY SALTZ (born February 19, 1951)."He is an American art critic. Since 2006, he has been senior art critic and columnist for New York magazine. Formerly the senior art critic for The Village Voice.

"He received the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism in 2018 and was nominated for the award in 2001 and 2006."

WELL, he is funny and that's good. I don't like his vulgar mouth which he uses for shock value at times. And his "comedy" routine eventually bores me.

BUT he knows his stuff and I do listen to him.

BY THE WAY...
Sister Wendy did not read her lines. She had a wonderful memory and could express her feelings to the max.

 

Susan Maxwell Schmidt

12 Days Ago

I adore Sister Wendy (believe it or not)! I keep meaning to look and see if the whole series is on YouTube. She was wonderful!


___________
Susan Maxwell Schmidt
So-so Group Moderator,
Sometimes Board Moderator and
Artist Extraordinaire

 

David Bridburg

12 Days Ago

Robert,

The two deliveries are different. I like Sister Wendy better. But it is not really criticism. It is a very good sense of art history.

What he lacks in historical knowledge at times he makes up for in sheer insight into contemporary art. But I have not seen more of Sister Wendy yet.

Dave

 

Robert Frank Gabriel

12 Days Ago

David,
Sister Wendy is listed as both an Art Historian and Art Critic. The distinction pertaining to her is a bit too subtle for me.

"Art criticism is the discussion or evaluation of visual art. Art critics usually criticize art in the context of aesthetics or the theory of beauty."

"Art history is the study of objects of art in their historical development and stylistic contexts; that is genre, design, format, and style."

IMO Wendy is both Critic and Historian...

 

David Bridburg

12 Days Ago

I have only seen the history side of her so far.

Dave

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Robert Frank Gabriel

12 Days Ago

DID YOU KNOW?

PLINY the Elder
"The earliest surviving writing on art that can be classified as art history are the passages in PLINY the Elder's Natural History (c. AD 77-79), concerning the development of Greek sculpture and painting."

 

Changing the topic for the moment...

My Aesthetic Pleasure in Viewing Art...

I do my best to gaze at Art, not just look at it. Just as I do my best to listen to Classical Music, not just hear it.

When I set my gaze on Art, I seek an aesthetic pleasure perhaps a spiritual experience (transcending the ordinary).

Currently, my gaze has been captivated by Goya's "Black Paintings." These paintings (on the walls in his house) were created while he was an old and ill man. The Black Paintings show both the sadness and horror we all have to endure sooner or later in our lives.

I am fortunate in that my aesthetic gaze has been well developed during my 40 years as a photographer peering into a framed viewfinder.

 

BACK ON TOPIC...

PETER FULLER...ART CRITIC

"He believed that the best artists in the world have faith, any faith as long as it is strong and expressed in their work through their humanity. Peter devoted himself to art criticism with an intensity that rivaled the predecessors he wrote so vehemently about and to this day remains broadly uncontested. By the time of his death aged 42, he had written 15 seminal books on art and founded the popular magazine Modern Painters, which today is one of the most widely read art magazines in the world."


THE FOLLOWING WRITTEN BY LAURENCE FULLER (SON OF PETER FULLER)
"Peter Fuller was like a punch in the guts to the art world from 1969 to 1990, and until his last breath he was a radical. His writings spanned art history, psychology, sociology, aesthetics, biology, and religion, all emanating from his primary fascination with the arts. His ideas were ahead of their time, punctuated throughout with a belief that cultural reformation was possible through art. In this sense he was a radical-conservatist. In his later years, he was heavily influenced by the works of John Ruskin, and in 1987 he founded this magazine, naming it after the series of books by Ruskin entitled Modern Painters."

http://laurencefuller.squarespace.com/blog/2015/7/13/radicals-on-film-the-intertwining-legacies-of-john-ruskin-peter-fuller

 

What do Art Critics John Ruskin, Peter Fuller, and Sir Roger Scruton have in common with me? We argue for a spiritually transcendent art.

This type of transcendental Art needs to be nourished because of the decline of Christianity brought on by the Enlightenment, the Industrial Revolution, Science and unfettered robber baron capitalism.

About the art critic Peter Fuller by Jane Bown
"When I was a student, the art critic whose books I bought was Peter Fuller, founder of the magazine Modern Painters and a savage critic of most trends in contemporary art. I enjoyed the provocative seriousness of his essays. I also loved the writing of Robert Hughes, another critic whose eloquence was – and is – very much at the expense of current art."

 

David Bridburg

5 Days Ago

Robert,

Is the spiritualistic found in the fine brush work? The minimalism? The powerful? The impoverished? The enlightened? The impressionist? The wilderness painting? The picturesque?

Is it found in a category of art?

Or in single individual works taken one at a time?

It is found in protest against injustice?

Dave

 

Mario Carta

5 Days Ago

"We argue for a spiritually transcendent art."

It could very well be that what you argue for might be passed over by limiting and excluding much of the new art of today. :-)

 

David,
May I suggest you read Art Critics John Ruskin, Peter Fuller, and Sir Roger Scruton. All are excellent writers.

They will answer your questions.

Mario says..

"It could very well be that what you argue for might be passed over by limiting and excluding much of the new art of today. :-)"

Yep, right on target with what you say.

 

Ronald Walker

5 Days Ago

I don't have particular critics I love or hate but the ones I tend to pay attention to are the ones who's insight causes me to view something differently than I would of otherwise.

 

ROBERT HUGHES (28 July 1938 – 6 August 2012) was an Australian-born art critic, writer, and producer of television documentaries. He was described in 1997 by Robert Boynton of The New York Times as "the most famous art critic in the world."

"Hughes earned widespread recognition for his book and television series on modern art, THE SHOCK OF THE NEW, and for his longstanding position as art critic with TIME magazine. Known for his contentious critiques of art and artists, Hughes was generally conservative in his tastes, although he did not belong to a particular philosophical camp. His writing was noted for its power and elegance."

"The Shock of the New was broadcast by the BBC in 1980 in the United Kingdom and by PBS in 1981 in the United States. It addressed the development of modern art since the Impressionists and was accompanied by a book of the same name; its combination of insight, wit and accessibility are still widely praised. In 2004 Hughes created a one-hour update to The Shock of the New titled The NEW Shock of the New." https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2004/jun/30/art1

Hughes's TV series American Visions (1997) reviewed the history of American art since the Revolution.

Kenneth Clark, Sister Wendy, Sir Roger Scruton and Robert Hughes are to be praised for giving us such wonderful and insightful Art programs. All episodes can be seen and enjoyed on YouTube.

ON A PERSONAL NOTE...
I am disappointed to see that so many of our modern day artists simply have no interest in the History of Art (the Great Master Artists), no interest in excellent Art Criticism (see above). As a photographer I was very interested in the Great Photographers and what good critics had to say about them. One of my favorite photographers was Garry Winogrand (14 January 1928 – 19 March 1984) an American street photographer from the Bronx, New York, known for his portrayal of U.S. life and its social issues. I bought his photo books, listened to Garry on YouTube, read what the critics had to say about him.

 

David Bridburg

5 Days Ago




Hughes was very critical.

I share his criticisms. He also sets up many conflicts within his beliefs. At 49 minutes he states what troubles him the most, "time". It is not our culture, not commercial art, not photography, not politics being represented or not. It is what has humanity done with time? In the video he tries to capture time as painted on the canvas still today, but then collapses his argument in a dialog on abstraction trying to assert that basically not all abstraction is equal. We all know that.

Dave

 

David,
You pays your money, you takes your choice.

My choice is to read and listen (YouTube) to the great Art Critics starting with John Ruskin and ending (currently) with Sir Roger Scruton (still living).

Three of the Contemporary Artists favored by the Art Critic Robert Hughes are: David Hockney, Paula Rego, and Lucian Freud.
All three artists have skill and create Art with a slow hand.

Robert Hughes...." We have had a gutful of fast art and fast food. What we need more of is slow art: art that holds time as a vase holds water: art that grows out of modes of perception and making whose skill and doggedness make you think and feel; art that isn't merely sensational, that doesn't get its message across in 10 seconds, that isn't falsely iconic, that hooks on to something deep-running in our natures.

"In a word, art that is the very opposite of mass media. For no spiritually authentic art can beat mass media at their own game: that, we have to admit and take for granted, and move on."

"
Robert Hughes, who has died aged 74, was simply the greatest art critic of our time and it will be a long while before we see his like again. He made criticism look like literature. He also made it look morally worthwhile. He lent a nobility to what can often seem a petty way to spend your life."

"Hughes believed in modern art, whose story he told more eloquently than anyone else ever has. He was not some stick-in-the-mud. But he compared art in the 1900s with the art of today and observed that even our best do not deserve comparison with the pioneers of modernism. This is a truth that is hard to refute."





 

David Bridburg

5 Days Ago

Robert,

I appreciate what Koons has done. Perhaps that is perverted on my part. More perverted yet, I appreciated Hughes showing Koons ridiculous side, as if Koons has a moral compass or deeper side. Hardly.

Dave

 

David,
What I appreciate about Jeff Koons is that he has taken sugary kitsch and made many millions of dollars from it. That takes a certain kind of talent for money-making.

 

Quotes from one of my favorite Art Critics...ROBERT HUGHES...

"The greater the artist, the greater the doubt. Perfect confidence is given to the less talented as a consolation prize."

"One gets tired of the role critics are supposed to have in this culture. It's like being the piano player in a whorehouse."

"I hate all those b****** with faces like silver teapots at Sotheby's - all of that hypermarketing of art turns me right off. Because it intersects with a fatal propensity for sanctimony. I don't like the idea of art being a pseudo-religion. I love genuinely visionary, mystical art."

"The new job of art is to sit on the wall and get more expensive."

On Picasso:

"[Picasso's] death left the public with a nostalgia for genius that no talent today, in the field of painting, can satisfy.

BY MARK HUDSON...
" Robert Hughes was opinionated, sarcastic, occasionally boorish, frequently obnoxious – a flawed human being . Many of his judgements were patently wrong, but when it comes to looking back on the art critics of the last forty years, he may well appear the only one who mattered.."

 

I do my very best to like Abstract Art (Rothko, Klee, Kandinsky, etc).
Here is an Art Critic who championed Abstract Art.

"CLEMENT GREENBERG occasionally writing under the pseudonym K. Hardesh (January 16, 1909 – May 7, 1994), was an American essayist known mainly as an influential visual art critic closely associated with American Modern art of the mid-20th century. In particular, he is best remembered for his promotion of the abstract expressionist movement and was among the first published critics to praise the work of painter Jackson Pollock.

"Abstract art itself may have been born amid the painterliness of Analytical Cubism, Leger, Delaunay, and Kandinsky thirty years earlier, but there are all kinds of painterliness, and even Kandinsky's seemed restrained by comparison with Hofmann's and Pollock's."

MY CONFESSION...
I also do Abstract Art (Via Digital Art on my computer)...It's a way I have for just gazing at pure colors as a departure from reality.
https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/1-robert-gabriel.html?tab=artworkgalleries&artworkgalleryid=833614

 

Last of the Art Critics that I shall post here...

HERBERT READ....
Mr. Read tells us:
"The genuine arts of today are engaged in a heroic struggle against mediocrity and mass values, and if they lose, then art, in any meaningful sense, is dead.

"If art dies, then the spirit of man becomes impotent and the world relapses into barbarism."

Sir Herbert Edward Read, (4 December 1893 – 12 June 1968) was an English art historian, poet, literary critic and philosopher, best known for numerous books on art, which included influential volumes on the role of art in education. Read was co-founder of the Institute of Contemporary Arts.

SO FELLOW LOVERS OF ART...HERE IS A LIST OF SOME REALLY GOOD ART CRITICS...

Art Critics John Ruskin, Peter Fuller, Sir Roger Scruton, Sister Wendy, Robert Hughes, Herbert Read

 

Doug Swanson

3 Days Ago

"The genuine arts of today are engaged in a heroic struggle against mediocrity and mass values, and if they lose, then art, in any meaningful sense, is dead.

"If art dies, then the spirit of man becomes impotent and the world relapses into barbarism."

Damn. That's a pretty darn extreme statement. And just when did art ever die in human history? Even "barbarians" did art, but I guess to Read, they were not genuine because they didn't look like him. I don't know which part of that statement to attack first, the arrogance or the pretentious thought that HE KNOWs what art is, unlike he Great Unwashed masses. That quote explains why the sun indeed did set on the British Empire.

 

Doug,
" Great Unwashed masses."

The above are no longer interested or have never been interested in the Art of the Masters. I have a hunch 99.5 percent of all Americans have never heard of Bruegel the Elder (one of my favorite Artists).

Yes, Mr. Read is a tad pretentious, but he is an intellectual and not a peasant.

Our modern world is saturated with billions of images. It's a virtual Museum of Babel (even Bedlam). The Capitalist robber barons own 90 percent of everything.

The Abstract Artists have retreated into their fantasy world of color and shapes signifying nothing at all. I would even venture to say the millions of Abstract Artists ARE the barbarians.

When I desire an aesthetic experience I sure as heck don't gaze and Pollock, Koon, Warhol, etc. Nope.

I go right to the best...Bruegel the Elder...
"Born in what is now the Netherlands in the 1520s, reputedly into a peasant family, his work focuses on themes such as rural working life, religion and superstition, and the political and social intrigues of his day."

 

CONFESSIONS OF AN ART SNOB...
While I give little credit to the thousands of abstract artists America has spawned over the last 100 years or so, I admit to dabbling in that type of frivolity myself. I create digital abstract art, but unlike the Abstractionists, I realize that this Art Movement is a retreat from reality and a pilgrimage into a fantasy world signifying nothing at all except for color and shapes (doodling and scribbling). It is as if the Abstract Artists have turned so inward they no longer recognize or are interested in nature and society.

When I seek an aesthetic visual experience (perhaps even a sublime moment), I gaze at the Artists who are fully engaged in this world. Their subject matter shows me nature and humanity. Hence, I turn to the Realists and even the Figurative Expressionists to show me Beauty, melancholy, sadness, even despair (the stuff of life as we humans see and live it).

Some few of The Artists I take visual pleasure in are the Realists Jean-Francois Millet, Honore Daumier, Bruegel the Elder. If I feel wild and crazy, I enjoy the Expressionists Edvard Munch, James Ensor, Kathe Kollwitz and so many other "Master Painters" well skilled in their Art.

As for the ready-mades of Duchamp and others like him, well I use a ready-made every time I pee.

 

Doug Swanson

3 Days Ago

"The above are no longer interested or have never been interested in the Art of the Masters. I have a hunch 99.5 percent of all Americans have never heard of Bruegel the Elder (one of my favorite Artists). "

I don't have any particular axe to grind with Bruegel the elder or the younger or his brother, but really. Something of virtue MUST have happened since the 16th century. My experience is that lots of good art happens all the time today, but it doesn't look like yet another brown-obsessed Dutch "master". I admit that these guys had great technique, but so have many subsequent artists. It's an especially pungent issue since technique for the sake of technique has been under stress since the invention of photography in the 19th century. You really don't need a painter to make a realistic rendition, so artists have had to branch out and do things that cameras and video don't do. Yeah, imagery has gotten quicker and easier and led to a numerical proliferation that is staggering to think about, but it's the world we live in. You can't turn the clock back or unmake invention. We're just along for the ride in this, so we might as well enjoy it.

 

Doug,
Of course, Great Art has happened since Bruegel. There are literally hundreds of Master Artists since then that have created great Beauty and Sublime works of Art. To name just a few: Van Gogh, Rouault, Daumier and so many many more.

And yes Photography has certainly put a dent into realistic paintings. However, art mediums such as Pastel, Oil, Watercolor and others still challenge the skill of the Artist who must put in years of study and practice to produce a work of Beauty.

I had a photography darkroom for a few decades, AND I also dabbled in Art using the medium of Pastels. Two very different approaches in the final result.

As for modern Artists (last 100 years or so) once again we have many Master Artists such as Edward Hopper, Lucian Freud, Francis Bacon and many many more.

However, I close my mind and eyes to such nonsense as installation art and ready-mades. No thanks. As I have said, I am a cultural conservative and I prefer gazing at Art that is framed and presented on a wall.

 

Doug,
I want to thank you for adding your opinions on Art. We may not agree but it's good to always hear the other side. It's how we learn.

 

Bless our great Art Critics for producing the following wonderful Art shows which we can now enjoy on YouTube.

1. CIVILIZATION...(can be seen on YouTube)
Kenneth Mackenzie Clark, (13 July 1903 – 21 May 1983) was a British art historian, museum director, and broadcaster. After running two important art galleries in the 1930s and 1940s, he came to wider public notice on television, presenting a succession of programmes on the arts during the 1950s and 1960s, culminating in the Civilisation series in 1969.

2. SHOCK OF THE NEW...(can be seen on YouTube)
Robert Hughes (28 July 1938 – 6 August 2012) was an Australian-born art critic, writer, and producer of television documentaries.

3. Sister Wendy's ODYSSEY and Sister Wendy's GRAND TOUR (can be seen on YouTube)

Wendy Mary Beckett (25 February 1930 – 26 December 2018), better known as Sister Wendy, was a British religious sister, hermit, consecrated virgin and art historian.

4. WHY BEAUTY MATTERS... (can be seen on YouTube)

Roger Scruton (philosopher/art historian) wrote and presented a documentary, Why Beauty Matters, in which he argued that beauty should be restored to its traditional position in art, architecture and music.

 

Rudy Umans

1 Day Ago

Since art critics might read all of this somehow one way ot the other, I love them all!

 

Doug Swanson

1 Day Ago

"Why Beauty Matters, in which he argued that beauty should be restored to its traditional position in art, architecture and music." - This is an interesting question that I've often puzzled about.

On the one hand, the argument that beauty matters, that it's what art is about, on the other, beauty...been there, done that...make something new. So we're in an era in which what's defined as art includes abstract invention, completely non-representative art, and even outright "ruin-porn". Our local art scene even sponsors field trips to collapsing, vine covered buildings and sites full of century old railroad junk.

Given the lack of constraint of the eye of the beholder thing, not to mention the love of rusty railroad boxcars, just what does a beauty-lover do? These sort of questions inevitably come to some point where there's a "should" in the equation, but who says what should be? Past centuries left that decision to local despots and church officials, but thankfully, our constitutional freedoms have not institutionalized any aesthetic arbiters, at least not so far.

I generally punt on this and assume that, aside from certain matters of legality (child porn, copyright violations, violations of privacy or whatever), an artist can do whatever he or she wants, without any constraint. Ultimately, it's not so much critics but buyers who decide what is good enough to provide an income for artists. In any event, for each critic who likes aesthetics, I can probably find one that likes tumbledown buildings full of junk and stray dogs. Some of them even come from art colleges. We can stack that jury any way we want.

I guess we have to allow critics their place and their right to an opinion, but the market probably mainly determines what's beautiful, especially in an uncensored, non-evaluated medium like on-line sales. I find myself groaning when log in here, look at recent sales and realize that I just don't have enough sunsets, snowy mountains and flowers. Beauty gets old after a while, even sometimes when I'm actually shooting a sunset.

I have to take a break and find some junk cars or an abandoned graveyard.

 

Doug says..."an artist can do whatever he or she wants, without any constraint."

Sigh, and that's the current problem. I seek Artists who are very skilled in making images. When I gaze at Art, I want an aesthetic experience (which I have when I look at Van Gogh, Rembrandt, Munch, etc).

Since it is rumored that God is dead, High Art must take God's place in presenting us with our transcendental visual bliss (and yes I really believe this).

The Western World has a long history of presenting really great Art for our visual enhancement. Then along came the Industrial Revolution, Capitalism, unfettered consumerism, and billions of images that flit by our eyes on TV, etc.

All that has degraded High Art to the point of "an artist can do whatever he or she wants, without any constraint."

Fine Art enhances the human spirit. Problem is we live in a cynical age overrun with billions of tons of material garbage cluttering up and destroying nature. Hence now anyone can claim to be an Artist simply by going to the local garbage dump, bringing home a discarded object, and then presenting it in a gallery or museum as "art."

Nope, I reject all such garbage art. I also believe that good Art criticism (see Roger Scruton) is a "last ditch attempt to be part of the artistic tradition, to retain the internal perspective on an inherited culture."

 

Ronald Walker

8 Hours Ago

Sounds sort of like you have a manifesto on your hands Robert. I find myself agreeing and disagreeing with your basic premise. I do believe that most artist are hard working and not trying to film flam anyone. I feel art today, is better than any time in history. That being said there is just plain more art being made by more artist now than ever before. I feel that arts purpose, at the core, is not beauty but rather communication. So we probably have our differences but still I find your thoughts interesting.

 

Robert Frank Gabriel

19 Minutes Ago

Ronald,
I would hope most artists are hard working! But hard working does not mean they have much skill in the traditional manner of our past Great Artists. I believe mastery of your brush, pen, and oils, pastels, whatever else is of prime importance in the development of Masters Artists.

And yes I do have a manifesto in mind. I am a cultural conservative and I deplore the current degradation of Art...anything goes, anything can be called art, it's all relative, Warhol is just as great as Rembrandt, etc. This is utter nonsense.

It's like some goof is holding a baseball in his hands and proclaims he is a great pitcher like Mariano Rivera! Sorry, does not work that way.

Deemed the “greatest painter alive” during his lifetime, Jackson Pollock was an American painter who was a major artist abstract expressionist art in the 20th century. He eventually came to the point in his life in which he hated his "style," gave up painting, lapsed into alcoholism, and killed himself and another lady in a fatal car crash. He was 44 years old at his death.

Before he began his "drip drip drivel" Pollack was an expressionist. I love his painting "Going West." How I wished he had stayed with figurative expressionism. Pollack studied under Thomas Hart Benton (April 15, 1889 – January 19, 1975) an American painter and muralist. He was at the forefront of the Regionalist art movement.

Good news even today we have many great Artists. Bad news we have many many more terrible "artists."

So it goes.

PS...I seek artists who communicate Beauty and the Sublime...anyone can communicate...but not anyone can communicate thru Beauty.

 

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