Friday, October 12, 2012

Portrait of Artists by an Old Man

      Sitting in the town square on a lovely autumn day waiting for my car to be serviced, began musing about how many artists of all types call this little town home (Leonardtown, Maryland).  In the short time I have lived here, I have made friends who are involved in painting, photography, writing, music, theater and dance.  Pondering; does being involved in these activities give you the license to call yourself an "Artist"? And having recently reread James Joyce, this happened.


Portrait of Artists by an Old Man 

           Art is magnetic, or is it the artists?  Are they drawn to one another through their crafts and talents, or perhaps through their longings?  All artists have longings. Are they seeking a patron or just a kind, friendly ear or eye or simpatico heart?
            My sense of true art advances through criticism to the very brink of an abyss which swallows up the timid, incompetent, cowardly, and egocentric. Most of those retreat early lacking the courage to go to the edge for their art.  And only those with the guts to go to the edge will advance the arts and fly ike the disciples of the legendary Appolinaris.  The others will retreat to their little cliques and huddle together in sessions of mutual admiration, lacking the mettle to put their 'art' out there; reluctant to express and defend their 'art' toe to toe with society. They retreat to the conclaves of their own,damning the unaccepting public instead of realizing that lack of acceptance is brought about by lack of vision and recognition of the evolution and ecology of art.  They sit in gloomy circles in the back booth of a smoky cafe and compete in artistic expressions of self pity and moral poverty

More on the ecology of art later.....