Monday, September 15, 2008

Let's Talk About Art!

When you read as many Conservative articles as I have, certain themes emerge. Certain standard articles that many conservatives take a whack at. Like "The Muslim Menace" article; very popular.

One of the odder ones is the one about lousy music kids are listening to these days. I wonder if they have much awareness of how that article makes them look. And the answer is that Christian Conservatives probably love hearing about the devil's music. And that's who's going to buy their books.

By the same token, articles on Art, particularly modern Art, baffle me as well. I'm not talking about Art that is trying to offend (like that Madonna made of Dung from a few years back). I get why they might object to that (My reaction is more that some art is crap for crap's sake, and it's depressing having to defend juvenile crap).

No I'm talking about art like Paul Greenberg describes in his latest article. Essentially a fountain of water over metal that looks like a wreck from what he describes. Or a pile of debris. At any rate, he doesn't get it. And he doesn't like it. And he felt the urge to express this disdain, while complaining about the price of the art he doesn't like.

First let's deal with the price - the price was set presumably by the committee in charge of doing the grounds - and presumably it's a fair price for what you can get art for. So if they had put up something Mr. Greenburg had really liked, it would still cost around $400,000. That's what an individual outdoor feature goes for, presumably.

So either he thinks they shouldn't bother with art at all - just put up some off the rack fountain and be done with it (which would probably be a bit cheaper), or he has an aesthetic reaction to it. He doesn't like it, and he feels like the world should revolve around what he does and doesn't like.

Greenburg gets away with this because he assumes that most of his readership shares his prejudices. Which is the basis for many a conservative article, come to think of it.

No comments: