Just Me

Just Me
Look,I'm just sayin'

Monday, March 21, 2016

Enough ?

 When others are willing to pay for something is that confirmation of its' worth ? You would have to say it validates its' monetary value, that is obvious enough, but that isn't what I am thinking about. I am thinking about its' worth as an object or idea. Even if something free enjoys great popularity the question remains, would people pay for it ? Is the parting of our wealth, however meager or large, the measure ? Is that action the "stamp " of approval ?
 There are things I don't understand. Abstract art is one of those things. I see the famous paintings and wonder about their appeal. Is the appeal truly an artistic appreciation or is that something that people have been convinced of. Andy Warhol famously painted a Campbell soup can and it is worth a fortune. Nothing abstract about it though. Lately I have been seeing " starry night " in a few articles. Hailed as a masterpiece it looks like a child painted it to me. It is also worth millions of dollars, why ? Something I don't understand at all. I expect I never will. I wouldn't give a dime for it as a piece of art. Is it a masterpiece because others are willing to pay millions for it ? Is that the confirmation od its' value ? I went to a local museum and they were having an art display. An artist had hung some old pool cues from strings and called it " dancing sticks. " The artist enjoys some moderate regional fame and the asking price was in the thousands. I just stared at it in amazement. Really, old pool cues on strings ? Well it is something I don't understand at all. I could have went home and duplicated that easy enough. What I can't duplicate is his name or his fame.
 I guess what I am trying to say is, people will pay for the things they are convinced that they need, or that others also want. The secret to selling anything is creating that desire. In the case of this abstract art I feel the people have been duped. Somehow those folks convinced others it is art. They so ingrained this belief in others that those that don't " get it " are considered uneducated and uncultured. They prove the value of this art by spending millions of dollars on it. It must be good if it costs that much is the thinking. At least that is my thinking on this subject. It isn't only art where this takes place. Artificial worth is assigned to a lot of other things as well. Paying for the " brand " is a common example of that. Consider Under Armor clothing. Good stuff no doubt about it but is the value really that great ? Some believe, well many do given its' popularity, the cost is justified. That little symbol on the clothing stamps its' value. When I was a young man it was an alligator on your polo shirt ! Big bucks for that stuff. Both are what the public in general are convinced is the best. The best costs more ! Is that a true statement ? Is something only worth what others are willing to pay for it ? Yes, it is, to THOSE OTHERS.
 So the question remaining is how valuable to you is that confirmation ? Is the denial of that value a form of self protection ? What I mean is, if I refuse to compare my work, whatever that may be, against the standard of monetary value, am I just kidding myself ? Is that a protection against failure or rejection ? Does the receiving of " payment " confirm your work as valuable ? Is that the sole validation acceptable as absolute proof ?
 I do wonder if money changes the art. That is to say, if I begin to be paid for something will that change that same thing ? If I were to be paid for writing these blogs would I continue to just write my thoughts ? Or would I feel like I have an audience that needs to be satisfied ? The same holds true no matter what the action is. Does money taint the art ? If no one had paid Van Gogh for his paintings, accomplished while in an insane asylum, would they be regarded as masterpieces ? I don't think so. Was it madness that painted those pictures or was it genius ? The money says genius, I reserve judgement. If he hadn't gotten paid for those works would he have continued to paint them ? Is the only truly honest work we do, done solely for ourselves ? I guess the real question is; is that enough ?