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February 11, 2009

’A controversy recently erupted in Sweden’

Any piece that begins with those words must be linked to on this blog for that reason alone. But as it happens, the rest of the piece (by the ever-insightful Theodore Dalrymple) is excellent too. A sample:

The successful modern artist’s subject is himself, not in any genuinely self-examining way that would tell us something about the human condition, but as an ego to distinguish himself from other egos, as distinctly and noisily as he can. Like Oscar Wilde at the New York customs, he has nothing to declare but his genius: which, if he is lucky, will lead to fame and fortune. Of all the artistic disciplines nowadays, self-advertisement is by far the most important. . . .

The task is not so much to criticise as to understand: that is to say, to understand how and why this terrible shallowness has triumphed so completely almost everywhere in the west.

These are good points. Hopefully more Swedes -- and more Westerners in general -- will be able to come to terms with them.

(H/T Wittingshire and As the Line Blurs)

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This may be the era where the artists who will be considered "great" later on - are the ones who (usually) are not in the limelight, not (usually) the popular ones getting the big $$$$, not (usually) the artists who are seen at most of the official art shows...So art collectors should think outside the box in their search for good artworks!

Hope all of you who are visual artists - paint, carve, etc. on anyway....Even if your art has to be done part time while you work somewhere else to earn a living!!!

And the article Gina links to really covers lots of bases about the weaknesses of many in current Western ARt...(Might be a good article for college teachers to consider for student readings on modern art failings).
And to any of you who are art collectors - Iwould say - trust your own good taste. Don't buy the fashionable piece unless you really like it. Look for good art in the less-than-fashionable places. It surely would be cheaper than if shown in NYC or other "official" art places.

If you can afford it, try to get your hands on original artwork being done for some of the wonderfully illustrated childrens' books today! There' no shortage of well-done, even stunning art work!!!
Our culture wants the deconstructed, sometimes technically inferior artwork for our adult audience, but such deconstructed and technically inferior art will rarely show up---on a child's book cover!!!

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