Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Create to make a statement or to sell? The great debate

I have heard many times from artists about creating a work of art that will sell or create a work that will express a feeling whether it be a bad feeling or a good feeling.

Artists are emotional, sensitive beings. They wish to create something that will speak for them. Art that will enlighten the viewer and bring awareness to a subject that wasn’t made aware before. Most of the time creating is an emotional response to something.

But what if you also would like your work to sell? An artist then can second guess their initial response to the subject matter and thoughts of reducing the impact of the art occurs. Are artists then selling out? Down playing their natural abilities to put emotion and excitement in their work? For fear of having their art ridiculed, of being negative and something that wouldn’t be hung on anyone’s wall or placed on a pedestal in a Den?

I have heard many stories from artists that paint animals and the great dilemma of painting to please a ‘would be’ collector. Or painting what is really there and what the artist really feels about the situation.
In the real world, many animals may seem like they are being abused, by the equipment used to train them or with what is used by someone to control them. And even the types of fencing that is used to hold them in an area.

I’m not looking for animal rights activists to start chiming in here, as I am still on the topic of art. Portraying that equipment and the emotions on the face of that animal in a piece of art is what is being addressed here. If you include barbed wire in a painting, if you include the stressed look on an animals face, will that art sell? Or make a statement, or both? Some may see the animal as stressed, while others would see it as excitement and the beauty of that particular breed. And the barbed wire may have a negative impact on the viewer and they feel sorry for the animal behind that wire, but on the other hand, this art is creating a response, an emotional response. Isn’t that what the art is created for in the first place? To create responses, whether good or bad, and to start a dialog for the artist to open up a little more about why it was created?
Creating the “explosive, emotional response art” is a great learning tool, for not only the artist who created the work, but also for the viewer. The viewer should be validated that their response is good and that it is ok to feel the way the art is pushing them to feel. Though these collectors may not want to display that work of art in their home because of a negative feeling, they will go home with a feeling. A piece of art helped them to feel and to have an honest feeling about that subject. Maybe it will help them to change something in this world for the better. Isn’t that what art is about?
So next time you create something from fire and emotional excitement, keep going with it. Don’t squelch it with that question “Will this sell?”

Artists, go with your heart and your emotional response to what you are creating and don’t lose sight of why you are creating it. Whether it be art that delights or art that creates a great controversy, or both!I have heard many times from artists about creating a work of art that will sell or create a work that will express a feeling whether it be a bad feeling or a good feeling.

Artists are emotional, sensitive beings. They wish to create something that will speak for them. Art that will enlighten the viewer and bring awareness to a subject that wasn’t made aware before. Most of the time creating is an emotional response to something.

But what if you also would like your work to sell? An artist then can second guess their initial response to the subject matter and thoughts of reducing the impact of the art occurs. Are artists then selling out? Down playing their natural abilities to put emotion and excitement in their work? For fear of having their art ridiculed, of being negative and something that wouldn’t be hung on anyone’s wall or placed on a pedestal in a Den?

I have heard many stories from artists that paint animals and the great dilemma of painting to please a ‘would be’ collector. Or painting what is really there and what the artist really feels about the situation.
In the real world, many animals may seem like they are being abused, by the equipment used to train them or with what is used by someone to control them. And even the types of fencing that is used to hold them in an area. I’m not looking for animal rights activists to start chiming in here, as I am still on the topic of art. Portraying that equipment and the emotions on the face of that animal in a piece of art is what is being addressed here. If you include barbed wire in a painting, if you include the stressed look on an animals face, will that art sell? Or make a statement, or both? Some may see the animal as stressed, while others would see it as excitement and the beauty of that particular breed. And the barbed wire may have a negative impact on the viewer and they feel sorry for the animal behind that wire, but on the other hand, this art is creating a response, an emotional response. Isn’t that what the art is created for in the first place? To create responses, whether good or bad, and to start a dialog for the artist to open up a little more about why it was created?
Creating the “explosive, emotional response art” is a great learning tool, for not only the artist who created the work, but also for the viewer. The viewer should be validated that their response is good and that it is ok to feel the way the art is pushing them to feel. Though these collectors may not want to display that work of art in their home because of a negative feeling, they will go home with a feeling. A piece of art helped them to feel and to have an honest feeling about that subject. Maybe it will help them to change something in this world for the better. Isn’t that what art is about?
So next time you create something from fire and emotional excitement, keep going with it. Don’t squelch it with that question “Will this sell?”

Artists, go with your heart and your emotional response to what you are creating and don’t lose sight of why you are creating it. Whether it be art that delights or art that creates a great controversy, or both!