7 Answers

  1. To begin with, the artist is not a self-proclaimed artist. Whether a person is an artist is decided not by him, not by his relatives, not by ordinary viewers, and even more so not by some abstracted “history” that the main art critic is trying to exhibit for lack of knowledge of history itself.

    Whether a person is an artist is decided first by other artists, then by critics, art historians, and gallery owners. “Verrocchio gave birth to Leonardo.” The criteria for this recognition are quite simple, and are described by the example of a room in which for several thousand years there has been an incessant conversation about form, color, composition and context — and if the artist is included in the dialogue, then others confirm his existence in this dialogue by articles, sales, grants, mentions. If not, no.

    The problem is that inclusion in the dialog occurs not only on the canvas, but also outside it. Many people think that art manifestos are an invention of the twentieth century — but Rubens 'texts about imitating statues or Jacques-Louis David's about writing “Sabine Women” work in much the same way. The only thing that has changed in the last 500 years is the constant expansion of the range of contexts where the most accessible is historical, social or religious, and the least accessible is the life of the artist himself.

    In the light of which, the question arises-so to whom and what does the artist explain in this case? An ordinary artist statement is not written to make the work good — it is not part of it. Exhibition press releases exist not as explanations, but as clarifications of methodology and context — which an exhibition can usually do without. And people within the art community are less likely to need explanations to understand — and more likely to relate.

    The point is that an artist's ability to explain is not valuable in itself. It is just a consequence of all his other activities, which include not only the works themselves, but also a constant re-evaluation of the experiences of previous eras, a dialogue with living colleagues and attempts to respond to those who have already left. And even if you don't need to explain anything to your friends and colleagues, the ability to explain is still organically formed due to the fact that a person thinks about all this voluntarily or involuntarily every day.

    What does the lack of this ability mean in this case?

    Writing the first artist statement usually catches up with artists before graduate school — that is, at the very moment when a person is required to make the transition from idle passion on Sundays to consistent work.

    No one likes this business. It is difficult. They say that it never gets easier — besides, in each subsequent statement, the author inevitably polemics with the previous one. But if you compare the author's statements at the entrance and at the exit from the academy, there is no denying that they are getting better.

    There are no statment writing classes in graduate school. Statements get better as a result of the path you've traveled, a lot of conscious choices, and a huge amount of systematic, incessant attempts to find Something that works best. This is a bastard, long, hard experience for which no one thanks you — it is done not because it is part of the program, but because without it nothing will happen at all.

    The lack of a clear idea about their elections is the result of their lack of progress, lack of awareness. The result of a non-traversed path. And it is hardly possible to dissuade yourself here, shifting responsibility to the work, so that they “speak for themselves” — after all, the work in such cases demonstrates all the same lack of access, since they are, in fact, on the same foundation.

    In other words, the ability to say something about your work is just a consequence of the fact that the artist basically has something to say.

  2. The artist doesn't owe anyone anything. If he feels that he needs to sell out, then he will have to explain what he has done. If he does not have such an aspiration, then he can put the device on these explanations, not get too hot and continue to do what he does.

    Sometimes this position also works, and the artist earns money.

    Sometimes – �no.

    If we are talking about the space of high art-here the answers may have a separate semantic color…

    If we are talking about a cynical art market – then the answer will have to be different.

  3. No. Explaining your own works is just as ridiculous as explaining jokes. Who understood-he understood. Those who do not understand-that goes through the forest. And this applies not only to painting, but also to any act of creativity in general, be it literature, music or cinema. The meaning of the creative act is that the viewer and the creator enter into resonance through the work. If there is no resonance, then it is not fate. Explanations will only spoil the effect, not create it.

  4. No. The creative act is to some extent unconscious. The meaning of a work is found in the perception of another. The artist can certainly talk about the idea, but not necessarily. The author's gaze dies as soon as the work is created – then it only accumulates the energy of time and the views of the beholders, and a growing meaning appears.

  5. I don't think he should. You can draw without putting a deep meaning, on emotions or draw what you see, but what causes you some pleasant feelings or like aesthetically. It is best when others look at your work and it evokes something different for everyone, some special state of mind or memories or feelings.

  6. In general, there is a kind of activity that is precisely engaged in this-understanding, understanding art and explaining it – this is art criticism, theater studies, literary studies, film studies, etc.The artist-creator is not obliged to explain his art at all. He CREATED and this is the end of the ego mission! But most artists don't do that. They are well aware that a potential buyer will never buy something they don't understand. And if an artist wants to get paid for his work, then he simply has to explain his work. Note that literally all artists do this all the time-theater directors explain their performances, film directors explain their films, and artists explain their paintings. Although, of course, there are such proud individuals among the creators who are “trapped”by this. From my point of view, they are lazy and stupid!

  7. There is such a famous work of the Yugoslav conceptualist Mladlen Stilinovic, it says An Artist Who Cannot Speak English Is No Artist. This is, of course, an ironic criticism of the modern globalist order, but the fact remains that a modern artist must be able to talk, including about his works! It is through those things that are called in scientific language “reflection”, “discourse” and “meta-description” that the artist confirms his belonging to modern (and not just) art-shows himself not only as a master of this or that craft, but as a person of today who is closely connected with actual problems. The main part of this skill is the ability to describe and explain one's own work – not to analyze it at the level of a single work or the shapes and lines in it, but to clearly express the range of ideas and topics that are related to the results of his art classes.

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