Friday, August 21, 2009
Questions in a world of blue...
I was feeling stumped again for blog material..
Not sure how much longer I can keep this up, I don't want this blog to go away but I don't want to just write filler or waste your time either. Anyway, I asked some friends on facebook for some suggestions for blog topics this week and I received many great ideas. Here is the one I thought I could run with for today's post.
Kelly Price-Colston (fellow Fayetteville Underground Studio mate and talented artist) Asks : In such a consumer market with fast food, one hit wonders and instant gratification- what is the role of the artist now, and in the future... in your opinion?
Painter Francis Bacon said, "The job of the artist is always to deepen the mystery."
I have to agree with Bacon's statement. Mystery is what I am looking for in the art I make, view and buy. As Kelly alludes, we are stuck in this fast food world, just spinning our wheels, looking for quick fixes to fill the voids we may carry or to transport us away and numb us. We often go for the quick fix, looking for the next item du jour, and a side of fries with that, while we spin faster down the road towards the next mindless binge and purge. This does not sound very mysterious at all.
So what is the artist's role in this fast and sick world? I think our role is to get people to slow down long enough to feel again. To transport them away deep inside a work of art and perhaps into themselves or even allow them into our mind and get them to see things from our point of view. Perhaps it is a bit like taking a world encased in grey cinder blocks and neon, littered with burger king wrappers, and the hum of bad mass produced pop music and transforming it into a lush place covered in thick red velvet drapes, ambient light, brimming with poppies and the music of Eric Satie.
The artist's job is to provide solace for the soul even if just for a moment. I am not saying all art needs to be sweet and easily digestible, but that it offers some sustenance that the viewer is not finding in the "regular" world. Most art is one of kind and made by human hands and humbly so; just in the way it is made helps to remind the viewer of the value of humanity and the peace that comes from slowing down. Perhaps our job as an artist is also to remind people to live their dreams and that sometimes it is more important to be a bit poor and do what you love, than to be caught up in the rat race of society. Artists bring value, clarity, thought, and beauty into the world while at the same time artists question, push boundaries, and explore the dark places.
I think our job has been constant throughout time and will continue that way in the future, to be a job of sacrifice in order so that the world may awaken, feel and experience great beauty, innovation, pain, and of course a deepening mystery...
What is your opinion? Feel free to discuss in the comments.
© 2009 Megan Chapman
100 flashes of memory