Random thoughts of an artist at 11:30 pm
August 06, 2012
Yesterday after watching the documentary about Ai Wei Wei “Never Sorry”, now more than ever having a story that people can invest in and connect to as an artist is huge. The connection of your story can either make you or break you and can be the determining factor of your success, even more so than your art work. Artists who reach the status of icons and become celebrities beyond art circles are followed by wealthy collectors to the average Joe. There is something about their story that goes beyond the canvas, at this point their celebrity becomes a vehicle to a larger purpose and mission. In order for followers to rally behind a movement there has to be a leader or set of leaders who possess charisma that is unconventional and infectious. This inert belief by the chosen leaders in the art world who convince us that personal sacrifice is most beneficial for the collective in return place an expectation of sacrifice upon each individual within the collective. Once accountability and responsibility is handed down from the artist to the public with a sense of importance, history is made, a movement is set in motion and the artist(s) become a conduit for change. Once the larger society of people begin to take notice beyond the art world the effect an artist has on the public becomes paramount to the society as a whole and more specifically to race, culture, generation, and etc. For some strange reason I think the aristocratic society secretly cheer for the underdog and victims of the society they help to support out of greed and their egocentric attitudes, of course they too are victims plagued by an absence of humility or in the worst cases being disconnected to humanity. No matter your exposure to the arts learning and developing an appreciation for art in a broad generalization helps to remind us that we are human and the artists in their imperfections are constantly trying to reach perfection within their imagination, medium, space, instrument, stage and so on only to come back to the essence of humanity. I’m not beating up on the rich after all we love their financial support especially when they help fund the next big project or buy into the next big artist. These well to doers are typically surrounded by privilege which means they have options, resources and opportunity as well as economic influence. Therefore suffering to them is in the form of image not discrimination or inequality. I would say the upper echelon see the unorthodox celebrity artists subconsciously as visionaries who take on social responsibilities with a sense of courage and integrity they may lack. There is a certain power associated with money but this power doesn’t compare to the power and actions that are exercised by values and values are ignorant to the power of class or social status….random thoughts. What makes you as an artist valuable?