Enter Into Joy

Friday, December 24, 2010

Who Speaks for Art?

Artist Chuck Close

(or Shut Up and Paint)
I have often thought and still do think that art should speak for itself. If the art produced cannot communicate a purpose, intended or otherwise, it has failed. Every time I have seen artists interviewed (many), their verbalized explanations of their efforts have always fallen woefully short of their artistic expressions, no matter the fame or elevation of the artist. And yet art must, it seems, be spoken about, and more often than not the intelligent interviewer will go to the source to get the most accurate explanation of the art that is being commented on. This seems logical and yet impossible. No matter how articulate the artist, their explanation cannot hope to compete with the work. So what to do? As art and its value is so subjective and everyone’s opinion is valid on some level, do you just shove it out there and hope for the best? A big gamble. And depending on your aspirations for your art — too risky. It seems that to make a sometimes ham fisted explanation of your efforts is preferable to your efforts disappearing all together from the public eye. It is the seemingly eternal dilemma of Art & Commerce, Oil & Water, Chalk & Cheese.
— John Katz


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