Sunday, November 11, 2007

When does it become art?


I have always been drawing.
Painting. Photographing.
I've never become an artist in the real sense.
As a kid I saw Piccasso's abstract portraits and copied the idea.
I even tried to copy Michelangelo.
And Rembrandt. The drawings.

As a teenager I got thrown out of art class because
my studies of the naked body became a tad too detail oriented,
if you know what I mean.

Then one day we learnt that a monkey had become a famous artist.
Art critics had praised the art of a new up to then unknown artist.
Who's name would be revealed at some event.
Turned out to be the random work of said primate.
A good laugh on behalf of the besserwissers of the modern art world.
The paintings are probably quite valuable today. After all.

Sometimes I think posture is a great deal of the secret to modern art.
I appreciate modern art.
When it has aesthetic qualities that appeals to me.
I am not sure I ever understand the intent, if there's any.
Which is of course the freedom of art.
Explanations are not necessary. Even undesirable.
Mystique is good.
Space for interpretation must be left wide open.

Yesterday i was shown around a space that is to become an art gallery.
As part of a new designer shopping mall.
The space was raw and under construction.
Bags of cement, buckets of paint, the typical mess.
The smell of new paint.
Dust. Always part of construction work.

And in this space i saw art everywhere.
Not the art that will later be on display.
No, this was the art of seeing.
Marks on walls.
Patterns left after some piece of old material having been ripped off.
Looking like a flock of birds in flight.
A face. A baby. A monster. Or is it a killer wave?
Look closely enough and these places are full of art.
Modern art.
This art had no meaning. Nobody had planned it. it just happened.
in my head.
Is it art then? Who's the artist?
Or the editor, the curator?
Are the photographs I took art or documentary?
Selected slices of a mess, a space in disorder, not yet completed. Work in progress.
Is it now art? Because I say so?

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