16 May 2015

apropos Yoko


 New York 4 hours ago

Art makes people think. Yoko makes people think. Whatever you think of Yoko is art now. Thank you for your participation.


In the NYT yesterday was an article about Yoko Ono's show at MOMA. I do not write about her show but instead on the comment made by this contributor to the Comments dept which now accompany many NYT articles online. I find myself perusing this section for a few minutes to get an idea about how variously random people react to events in today's political, social, and cultural world. These Comments sections' being the new Hyde Park of op-ed pages. 

In any event, what struck me so sorrowfully was just how differently I imagine Art than to this fellow Stig  who had responded to another person's comments about the show (not favourably). I will not get into her work  but address this idea that "Art makes people think". (Art should make people think)

I find this disturbing because for me, Art has always made me feel something mysterious inside of me, almost as if a work has cross-circuited my prejudicial thinking patterns and gone straight to my soul. Saying this does  not discount the role of imaginative thinking which runs parallel to this 'feeling' in front of a work. It saddens me that Contemporary Art, since post-Dada, has somehow hijacked this experience and created a kind of Frankenstein of intellectual machinations which have taken over the education systems worldwide. This is a new phenomenon in the scheme of things. 

I am not a luddite, nor am I someone who caves into charming sentimental pastiches of reppitive and un-original works of Art, but I cannot understand how so many people have been hoodwinked into a Contemporary Art world reduced to coy symbols. After all, it is Philosophy which should make us think, but it is Art and Poetry which allows us to feel. How can it be otherwise? 

Who is Bach? Puccini? The Beatles? Mahler? Goya? Titian? Matisse? Arthur Miller? Tennessee Williams? BB King?,,, Maria Callas for god's sake?

And, just because I am at it; how did Contemporary Art divorce itself from sensuality anyway? How did Contemporary Art become reduced to a 'twitter-like' thought only to be jettisoned into the nearest litter bin?

Ah, a friend might say, you miss the point: "Follow the money trail!,,, It is just entertainment...."

Another might say:
"Stop with all your serious misgivings over the state of Art,,, its just game,,,, a shell game for the rich."

Mais, "NON!" I say, because I am a painter who still yearns to be moved by Art, not titillated (or twitterated) and entertained like its a Disney film. 

Suddenly, in all this, I am reminded of The Glass Bead Game by Herman Hesse which I had so loved many years ago. 

More to be revealed,,,,

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