Tuesday, June 5, 2012


Art is too serious to be taken seriously.

Ad Reinhardt
Hello Sandy
The only people who take serious art seriously are some artists, (occasionally), people who buy art and art critics. The people who don't take it seriously are those who do it, those who sell it and those wretched people who are somehow forced unfortunately to look at it or listen to it against their will. How do I know this? Because I'm an artist and because I've observed the way art is handled in this age.

Watch a good musician in concert. You may see intense concentration while a piece is being performed, but at the end the musician will probably break into a big smile and maybe even a laugh. Sometimes you even see the smile while the piece is being played. It is the joy of music, or dance that you are seeing. The smiles on the faces of the actors at a curtain call are showing the same joy.

I've known artists who will chuckle at a painting they've done or are working on. It's the same with writers. I know that I will get a laugh out of a particularly strange and subtle twist of language when I'm writing. I avoid cliches, because I champion original thought in myself and in others, so I will go searching for the expression that tells the story without repeating the tried and true. And when I see it in other arts, the dancer who pushes his body into a movement I've never seen, or the musician who gives me a surprising cluster of tones, I feel the same delight.

There is a solid bedrock of mystery involved in the relationship between an artist and the work being done. It has to do with value and origination, an invisible generic bond of co-creation between the artist, the work and the inspiration that demands and forces it into being. It is as if there is an anonymous angel of pure spirit that finds it in whatever galaxy it lives, brings it out of hiding and gives it to the artist who is ready to respond.

The scientist will study to uncover the secret laws of nature. The engineer will design the mechanism that measures. moves and controls the natural forces. But what the artist does is transcendental. And who can be serious about that.

DB - Vagabond Journeys
Never Give Up

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