Monday, October 8, 2012

Does Art Have A Future?

Thus we live in a strange and contradictory culture, where the most talented college students are ideologically indoctrinated with contempt for the economic system that made their freedom, comforts and privileges possible. In the realm of arts and letters, religion is dismissed as reactionary and unhip. The spiritual language even of major abstract artists like Piet Mondrian, Jackson Pollock and Mark Rothko is ignored or suppressed.

Thus young artists have been betrayed and stunted by their elders before their careers have even begun. Is it any wonder that our fine arts have become a wasteland?

As part of the article above, which is by Camille Paglia, the wonderfully provocative professor of art history, and one of the most shameless self-promoters in higher education [I truly mean that as a compliment], Paglia notes the important relationship between manual skills and artistic endeavor, with particular importance paid to the fact that Warhol was from the manufacturing Mecca of Pittsburgh.

I have to say, being mostly self-taught as a luthier, that it wasn't until I mastered the use of the lathe and router that I began to see the tactile arts in a much more complete dimension.  Metal sculptors now amaze me with their skill and flair.