We are all a bunch of Winnie the Poohs
July 18, 2011 7:00 PM   Subscribe

Jed Perl reviews "Thomas Kinkade: The Artist in the Mall"
posted by vidur (67 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

 
” Vallance links Kinkade’s “work” with Marcel Duchamp’s decision to exhibit a urinal as a sculpture, with Jackson Pollock urinating in Peggy Guggenheim’s fireplace, as well as with work by Warhol and contemporary artists Paul McCarthy, Mike Bidlo, and David Hammons.

Oh....my.
posted by R. Mutt at 7:09 PM on July 18, 2011 [4 favorites]


"One of the choicest sections of Vallance's essay is devoted to Kincades much discussed act at Disneyland, where he urinated on a statu od Winnie the pooh"

Move over Ozzy!

truly the best of the web!
posted by clavdivs at 7:13 PM on July 18, 2011


"statue of"...heh, ah, what a find, thanks for posting this.
posted by clavdivs at 7:14 PM on July 18, 2011


I really want to buy up a bunch of Kinkade's paintings of houses and get someone to paint bodies on fire inside and crawling out the windows.

Also, can you guess who was the murderer in the Law and Order episode with a Thomas Kinkade character?
posted by griphus at 7:18 PM on July 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


Quoted in the article:..."[Kinkade] depends on a calcified, formulaic, static, even stale division between ‘high art’ and low forms of culture, since even as he enters the fray at the latter level, he relies on the value embedded in and conveyed by a strict and stringently preserved notion of the former to imbue his own productions with value/prestige/aura/authenticity. In other words Kinkade needs kitsch in order to partake of and try to participate in its elevated Other."

That quote is a like a perfect gravity and light-sucking vortex of ironic, post-modern, undergrad English major, Warholian stew from which no rational thought or coherent sentence can emerge from.
posted by marxchivist at 7:30 PM on July 18, 2011 [15 favorites]


Can't we just let shitty dogs lie?
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 7:35 PM on July 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


Hack.
posted by QuarterlyProphet at 7:42 PM on July 18, 2011


” Vallance links Kinkade’s “work” with Marcel Duchamp’s decision to exhibit a urinal as a sculpture, with Jackson Pollock urinating in Peggy Guggenheim’s fireplace, as well as with work by Warhol and contemporary artists Paul McCarthy, Mike Bidlo, and David Hammons.

Oh....my.
posted by R. Mutt at 10:09 PM on July 18 [+] [!]


There, there, don't take it personally.
posted by benito.strauss at 7:44 PM on July 18, 2011 [6 favorites]


Painter of BLight
posted by Frank Grimes at 7:46 PM on July 18, 2011 [4 favorites]


Thomas Kinkade feels like what happens with new music genres become popular and a Christian Radio™-friendly version is born a little later. Sucking the life out of things seems endemic to the Culture of Life™ crowd.
posted by basicchannel at 8:01 PM on July 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


Sweet FSM, enough with the Kinkade already! Can't we just have another Banksy FPP?
posted by MikeMc at 8:02 PM on July 18, 2011


For those eyerolling at Kinkaid, the book review is as much a takedown of overheated academic theorizing as it is of "The Painter of Light (tm)" or as the reviewer put it about one author "a match made in bullshit heaven".
posted by donovan at 8:07 PM on July 18, 2011 [4 favorites]


Painter of Shite (tm)
posted by njohnson23 at 8:11 PM on July 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


Also, can you guess who was the murderer in the Law and Order episode with a Thomas Kinkade character?

"The Good" S5, EP 23.

Can I have the Kincade spatula? I already have the garden caddy.
posted by clavdivs at 8:22 PM on July 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


Fun fact: There is no "high art" or "low art."

Kinkade paints soft, fluffy little fantasy worlds that I guess some people enjoy or find meaningful. And that's fine.

If you happen like a piece of art (or music or whatever), that's great. Experience it. Enjoy it. And use art criticism and theory to understand it, not as a way to decide what it is or isn't acceptable to find meaning in.
posted by chasing at 8:25 PM on July 18, 2011 [18 favorites]


("...what is or isn't acceptable to find meaning in," I mean. Sans "it.")
posted by chasing at 8:26 PM on July 18, 2011


wallace kenter
posted by clavdivs at 8:27 PM on July 18, 2011


Only thing worse than impenetrable postmodern theory/crit is grouchy conservative indictments of same.
posted by silby at 8:41 PM on July 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


Only thing worse than impenetrable postmodern theory/crit is grouchy conservative indictments of same.

Nope. In this case the grouchy indictment is much more amusing and interesting than the impenetrable claptrap. And I'm curious where you get the 'conservative'? In what sense is this conservative, other than appearing in the neo-conservative 'The New Republic'? (It hurts a bit to put that in writing, but the 80's were a long time ago.)
posted by benito.strauss at 8:47 PM on July 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


No Kinkade thread is complete without a link to Nathan Rabin's dissection of the direct-to-DVD abomination, Thomas Kinkade's Christmas Cottage, starring Marcia Gay Harden, Ed Asner (!), Chris Elliott (!!) and Peter O'Toole (!!!). Here's a sampling:

There are Thomas Kinkade-branded La-Z-Boys, air fresheners, and umbrellas, plus The Village At Hiddenbrooke, a Thomas Kinkade gated community in Vallejo, California. At one point, there were 350 Thomas Kinkade Signature Galleries selling reproductions of the master’s work. Fans could pay to have those paintings “enhanced” by “master highlighters” who altered the reproductions according to the customers’ wishes, though I imagine they drew the line at having random 666s or graffiti reading “Thomas Kinkade rapes children” inserted into the background of cozy tableaus of bubbling brooks and sleepy little villages at sunset.
posted by Rangeboy at 8:58 PM on July 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


And I'm curious where you get the 'conservative'?

Jed Perl is fairly well known for his conservative views on art. However, as in this piece, he can sometimes be quite entertaining and reasonably on target with his criticism. Robert Hughes was useful the same way back in the '80s with his attacks on hacks like Julian Schnabel and David Salle.

And, Pollock pissing in Guggenheim's fireplace was a statement, but it sure as fuck wasn't art. That was up to later folks like McCarthy and Warhol to Art-a-cize it.
posted by Phlegmco(tm) at 9:01 PM on July 18, 2011


Another Arts and Letters Daily bit of fun for today, about smell, not sight.
posted by kozad at 9:03 PM on July 18, 2011


For those eyerolling at Kinkaid, the book review is as much a takedown of overheated academic theorizing as it is of "The Painter of Light (tm)" or as the reviewer put it about one author "a match made in bullshit heaven".

Exactly. The mockery of overwrought academic writing and overtheorizing of every-damn-thing is what this article is really about, and it's hilarious. This is not to say that it doesn't mock Kinkade -- it does -- but that's not the crux of the article.
posted by asnider at 9:12 PM on July 18, 2011


HAH, did not know about Pollock pissing in peggys Char pot.

piss art:Images of urination in 20th century art
posted by clavdivs at 9:15 PM on July 18, 2011


That quote is a like a perfect gravity and light-sucking vortex of ironic, post-modern, undergrad English major, Warholian stew from which no rational thought or coherent sentence can emerge from.

Actually, it's quite clear.
posted by kenko at 9:17 PM on July 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


"I really want to buy up a bunch of Kinkade's paintings of houses and get someone to paint bodies on fire inside and crawling out the windows."

Try these on for size.

And then there's "Meth Lab In The Woods"
posted by cybrcamper at 9:32 PM on July 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


We subscribed to Canadian Art magazine to support a school fundraiser. My wife remarked that it reads like a bridal magazine for budding art collectors.
posted by bonobothegreat at 9:34 PM on July 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


Jed Perl is fairly well known for his conservative views on art.

Well, okay. I've gotten so used to seeing 'conservative' used in its political sense (and generally opposing it), that I forget that with respect to art and philosophy I'm pretty conservative, and that conservatism is a useful tool in criticism, if less so in seeking solutions to social problems.
posted by benito.strauss at 9:44 PM on July 18, 2011


I want a Kinkade painting of Pollock pissing in Peggy Guggenheim's fireplace. I would buy that.
posted by basicchannel at 10:41 PM on July 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


Once again I'm flashing back to my parents' Kinkaid period, where they dragged me to some meet-n-greet of his where he called his kids cottages. Even my parents thought he was kind of a dick after that.

I dunno, the paintings are okay, albeit super twinkly Snow Village. Could be worse. But the dude's 'tude (plus the kabillion TK galleries bloody everywhere) is what annoys me.
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:53 PM on July 18, 2011


Jed Perl is not reveiwing Thomas Kincaide at all here. He is a conserative (some say reactionary) critic writing for a conserative magazine--his last big book was on Watteau, an artist that has not had any real critical success for a long time. Perl's project, and this review is part of it, is to dismantle the post-structual attempts to seriously look at populist art as legitimate.

Perl wants to re-establish hi/lo dicthomies and to burlesque those critics who seek to think seriously about artists who have been caught in the middle of those dialectics. The example I use is Dave Hickey's essay on Rockwell in Air Guitar.

There is a lot going on worth writing about in Kincaide (well there was a lot going on a few years ago), for example the similarties in his workships, and in the workshops of Koons, for exampe--and Koons po-faced refusal of irony, and it's not unfair to point out those similarities, but Boylan is not a great writer and Perl is being disingenious as hell.

However Perl being disingenuously conservative is sort of his rasin d'etre. (Sort of like Hilton Kramer, but Kramer gets contemporary art and just thinks everything it does is corrupt, Perl appears not to get it.)
posted by PinkMoose at 2:06 AM on July 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


More than a generation after Pop Art became holy writ, it is rather tiresome to be announcing yet again that we live in a democracy where one person’s treasure is another person’s trailer trash, and that their masterworks are not necessarily inferior to the Picasso’s and Matisse’s in our museums.

The grocer's apostrophes in the sentence puncture its authority somewhat.
posted by acb at 2:21 AM on July 19, 2011 [5 favorites]


Funny subject.

If you like this review you dislike people who do critical analysis of Kinkade. By PinkMoose's reasoning (seems like the author is a conservative or something) this means you should dislike Kinkade. That means you feel like Kinkade does not express what art is meant to be. That means you prefer art that breaks new ground, that tells an exciting new story. But so do the people who wrote the crappy articles in the book. They just consider appreciating Kinkade to be the newest groundbreaking thing. So by that logic this review is just pigheaded and there's no reason to like it.

I liked the review. I don't like people who do critical analysis of Kinkade. But I have no problem with Kinkade-- he makes art that people want. I don't have a problem with people who draw covers for fantasy novels either. There is all sorts of interesting and popular art that never appears in museums.

I don't like the art criticism. It's just so many words to justify what they think is the cool new "controversial" thing to wank about. They'll put Kinkade in their "real" high art gallery, how nice for them. It's post-structuralist or post-ironic or whatever. But the high-low distinction remains; fantasy cover artists, or pixiv.net artists, will never go in a gallery until some accredited art critic recognizes them. Writing critical essays about Kinkade is just part of an inbred circlejerk that has nothing to do with breaking down the high-low divide.
posted by shii at 3:48 AM on July 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


Kincaide has not been reclaimed, and Hickey doesn't do the circle jerk.
posted by PinkMoose at 3:53 AM on July 19, 2011


Okay... I'm not exactly sure if that's a response to what I'm saying, or if it means the review is bad... but I'm reading an interview with Hickey now, it's pretty funny.
posted by shii at 4:04 AM on July 19, 2011


it was intended to be a response. the review isn't bad, but it's the same review that Perl has written countless times before. The book I suspect isn't great, Kincaide (and I would argue Rockwell) cannot be reclaimed. Perl's best writing is doing the reclaiming or the repositioning within canon that he is mocking here. You can see that in his book on Watteau.

Hickey is v. funny.

As a critic and curator, I love Franzetta, and would put him in a show tomorrow if given the opportunity. But yr right when you say the gallery system hasn't come around to him,.
posted by PinkMoose at 4:15 AM on July 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


Snow globes and doll houses.
posted by pracowity at 4:28 AM on July 19, 2011


Wow... is this the acid flashback thread? 'Cuz Kincade's artwork gives me one.
posted by kinnakeet at 4:53 AM on July 19, 2011


As a critic and curator, I love Franzetta, and would put him in a show tomorrow if given the opportunity.

If that's supposed to be Frazetta, you should call it "Boners for Loners: The Large-Breasted Sword-Admiring Tiger-Riding She-Beasts of Prehistoric Barbarian Mars."
posted by pracowity at 5:03 AM on July 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


If you happen like a piece of art (or music or whatever), that's great. Experience it. Enjoy it. And use art criticism and theory to understand it, not as a way to decide what it is or isn't acceptable to find meaning in.

We still say that we find meaning in art, implying the meaning was in the art in the first place. As long as this is the accepted way of talking about meaning in the context of art, it will remain legitimate to treat meaning as something that objectively exists.
posted by LogicalDash at 5:42 AM on July 19, 2011


I really want to buy up a bunch of Kinkade's paintings of houses and get someone to paint bodies on fire inside and crawling out the windows.

posted by honestcoyote at 6:04 AM on July 19, 2011 [3 favorites]


i was thinking of working up something on the economic and critical revival of the salon realists in the 19th century and Frazetta/Fantasy artists, maybe with a bit of Sadam, but yr idea works too.

Thanks for the correction.
posted by PinkMoose at 6:20 AM on July 19, 2011


Like the former governor of Alaska, this hack doesn't need more publicity, he needs less. Much less.
posted by tommasz at 6:29 AM on July 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


...use art criticism and theory to understand it, not as a way to decide what it is or isn't acceptable to find meaning in.

I like to use art criticism and theory to understand why Kincade's art is widely regarded as tripe, outside of my personal revulsion to it.

Also, codpiece!
posted by malocchio at 6:58 AM on July 19, 2011


@LogicalDash

I'm not sure what you're saying... That people do not find actual "meaning" in art (ie, it doesn't exist) -- or that the artist must put the "meaning" into the art in the first place so that a viewer can extract it?

If I find something meaningful, then yes -- that sense of "meaning" exists.

And I definitely don't think that authorial intent is all that matters when it comes to a work of art. Certainly there are all sorts of artists who are assholes, idiots, and quite possibly have stumbled bass-ackwards into accidentally creating something of note. But if I still view that piece of art and find it meaningful in some way (moving, funny, beautiful, whatever) -- then does it not have "meaning?"

Think of that macaque self-portrait that's been floating around. Plenty of people find that pretty meaningful -- funny, mostly, but it's actually a rather well-composed photo -- but I doubt there's much authorial intent behind it. Should we just go, "Oh, nevermind, then," and throw it into the cultural waste bin?
posted by chasing at 6:59 AM on July 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


> We still say that we find meaning in art, implying the meaning was in the art in the first place.

Not. One may speak metaphorically and still grasp that meaning is something that happens in a mind, not in a chunk of worked media.


> Fun fact: There is no "high art" or "low art."

First there is a mountain, then there is no mountain, then there is. Welcome to Stage II
posted by jfuller at 6:59 AM on July 19, 2011 [3 favorites]


I haven't read the book of essays in question (and I'd wager that outside of the excerpted material in the FPP, no one else has either), but the article came off as a grouchy old man in a magazine for grouchy old men using a book of essays as an excuse to rail against an academic culture that makes him feel grouchy and old.

I don't like the art criticism. It's just so many words to justify what they think is the cool new "controversial" thing to wank about. They'll put Kinkade in their "real" high art gallery, how nice for them. It's post-structuralist or post-ironic or whatever. But the high-low distinction remains; fantasy cover artists, or pixiv.net artists, will never go in a gallery until some accredited art critic recognizes them. Writing critical essays about Kinkade is just part of an inbred circlejerk that has nothing to do with breaking down the high-low divide.

Once you start mind-reading like this, and saying that people are doing something to be "cool" or "controversial" (basically a less eloquent version of the FPP article) then you're not really addressing their ideas any more, just imagined and projected motivations that you're reading into them.
posted by codacorolla at 7:03 AM on July 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


Not. One may speak metaphorically and still grasp that meaning is something that happens in a mind, not in a chunk of worked media.

Sure. If you're talking with someone who has already taken a course covering that particular chunk of the philosophy, the fact that the language is misleading doesn't really matter. And if we have a vast culture-wide dialog on the meaning of "meaning" then the metaphor can "die" and refer only to this particular sense you want: "to find meaning in something" can come to mean "to associate something with an idea".

That's not what it means now, though. A lot of people haven't thought this stuff through, and we still have some pretty serious critics who are convinced that a sufficiently well-conceived work of art has one and only one meaning. They're using the "metaphor" literally, and their use of the "metaphor" is the more obvious one.

When deciding what things mean, people who aren't critics tend to take the most convenient route. They'll assume you mean what it sounds like you mean. They'll assume the obvious.
posted by LogicalDash at 7:31 AM on July 19, 2011


More topically, are there any Garfield Minus Garfield-esque Kincaid remixes out there on the innernets?
posted by LogicalDash at 7:39 AM on July 19, 2011


Once you start mind-reading like this, and saying that people are doing something to be "cool" or "controversial" (basically a less eloquent version of the FPP article) then you're not really addressing their ideas any more, just imagined and projected motivations that you're reading into them.

Not every idea deserves to be taken seriously (by me, at least). The most egregious example is the right-wing think tank complex. They pump out paper after paper making odd, facile arguments that are really just different ways of claiming the powerful should be given more power. After the twentieth time taking one seriously, following its internal logic, and having it fall apart like the previous nineteen, the inductive instinct kicks in. You note the species, its distinguishing characteristics, and the next time you come across someone claiming we need to 'unfetter the genius of the free market', you're 90% of the way to labeling it bullshit from that phrase alone.

I've seen a similar phenomenon in criticism. Someone who puts the word 'Transgressive' in the title of an article has pretty much lost me. If you're going to transgress, do so. Announcing it doesn't make it so. It reminds me of when you tell a joke and someone responds "That's funny.". That's a failed joke — real funny makes people laugh, not comment on how funny it is.

I know nothing about Perl other than what he says in this article, but his critique of the critics seems sensible to me. (If he's mis-representing them, he's successfully fooled me). The Kjellman-Chapin quote he pulls has a wiff of the transgressive:
depends on a calcified, formulaic, static, even stale division between ‘high art’ and low forms of culture, since even as he enters the fray at the latter level, he relies on the value embedded in and conveyed by a strict and stringently preserved notion of the former to imbue his own productions with value/prestige/aura/authenticity.
seems like a case of throwing words at a claim until the reader submits. I also don't know why the high/low distinction needs to be 'static' for it to be useful, and I doubt that Kinkade and his fans think about art this way or would agree that his work relates to it this way.

Perl doesn't condemn all critical writing about Kinkade. He praises Pearson's and Morgan's articles (which sound more along the lines of of the writings about workshops that PinkMoose mentions above).

Perl's rhetorical claim "Aren’t the aesthetics of garbage just another form of garbage?" is too broad, but conversely, while Kinkade's art is bad, taking it seriously doesn't automatically make you a profound, clever, or good critic.
posted by benito.strauss at 8:48 AM on July 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


Dog days of summer bring out the easy topics for this week's copy requirement. No easier fish in no easier barrel than academics writing academically on un-serious subjects.

Fun fact: There is no "high art" or "low art."

There is, actually, though "high" and "low" are perhaps tendentious adjectives in this case. If your point is that there is no moral dimension to art, that's another matter.

But different art engages on different planes and levels and makes different demands on the intellect and the soul. To argue there is no qualitative difference is to trivialize all art, or bring it all down to the level of mere past time or entertainment.
posted by IndigoJones at 9:02 AM on July 19, 2011


a calcified, formulaic, static, even stale division between ‘high art’ and low forms of culture, since even as he enters the fray at the latter level, he relies on the value embedded in and conveyed by a strict and stringently preserved notion of the former to imbue his own productions with value/prestige/aura/authenticity.

can't say that this is "throwing words at a claim." it's not clearly written but it makes a semi-interesting point: thos kinkade's work being "important" depends on the split between "high art" and "low art", because even though his work is definitely "low art", the reception of his work as classy depends on his referencing "high art" tropes and methods of presentation.

now if the author went on to explore why she thinks kinkaid is doing the above thing, that would be kind of cool, and i would want to read it, even though i find academic writing on art exhausting to interpret.
posted by beefetish at 9:23 AM on July 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


tell me about moral art IndigoJones

actually tell me about immoral art, that sounds cooler
posted by This, of course, alludes to you at 10:00 AM on July 19, 2011


also "mere past time or entertainment" cuz this barrel is all wriggly with mackerel and here i am with a brand new shotgun
posted by beefetish at 10:08 AM on July 19, 2011


But different art engages on different planes and levels and makes different demands on the intellect and the soul.

Art doesn't demand anything. Artists and art critics might.

An artist can certainly make art that appeals to people who take a particular kind of interest in the art, but if some new fanboy comes along and decides that, say, Donnie Darko is mainly interesting because of how messed up it is, and doesn't notice the metaphysical implications at all--what's an artist to do about that? Get angry? Some have; it tends to alienate audiences who would otherwise be receptive. Declare the new fanboys "wrong"? It won't make any difference to them.

To argue there is no qualitative difference is to trivialize all art, or bring it all down to the level of mere past time or entertainment.

Alternatively, mere pastimes and entertainment can be turned into the highest of art, if we will only search for it in them.
posted by LogicalDash at 10:12 AM on July 19, 2011


can't say that this is "throwing words at a claim."

I think it's really sloppy criticism. Why include the word 'authenticity'? I don't think that's a criterion for distinguishing high versus low art.

I agree that it's trying to make the point you say it is, but I'm not even sure that claim is true. Is Kinkade taken to be a 'classy' painter? I don't think I know anyone who owns one, but I'd be surprised if a Kinkade fan would describe the work as 'classy', or any other term indicating high-versus-low. Then again, I'm often surprised by the things people like, so I could be way off here.
posted by benito.strauss at 12:51 PM on July 19, 2011


> I'd be surprised if a Kinkade fan would describe the work as 'classy'

It's impossible there aren't distinctions of class among those who purchase an original, the canvas-textured giclee print, the dinner plate, the beach towel, or the snowglobe.
posted by jfuller at 1:09 PM on July 19, 2011


It's impossible there aren't distinctions of class among those who purchase an original, the canvas-textured giclee print, the dinner plate, the beach towel, or the snowglobe.

Hunh, I wasn't aware there was such a wide variety of ways you can get your Kinkade. I stand corrected. And horrified.
posted by benito.strauss at 1:27 PM on July 19, 2011


benito: classy compared to other pieces of decorative work that you can buy at a drugstore or the mall. i'm drawing on my vast realm of anecdata of growing up amidst intense hickery here also, but the relative technical skill of thomas kinkade makes it "classy" among "low art". again relative to other pieces of decorative work that you can buy at a drugstore or the mall.
posted by beefetish at 2:20 PM on July 19, 2011


This shit is *hilarious*. Kincade is a dinosaur turd, yeah, but Jed Perl (if that's his or her name) is a fricking laugh riot, as effete as you can meet. There's nothing sillier than this. It's a killer!
posted by nj_subgenius at 5:53 PM on July 19, 2011


I thought that said, "Throwing words at a clam."
posted by sneebler at 6:50 PM on July 19, 2011


I thought that said, "Throwing words at a clam."

A distinguished New England summer tradition, right up there with heckling a scallop and disabusing a lobster.
posted by benito.strauss at 8:21 PM on July 19, 2011


Heckling scallops and disabusing lobsters, next time, when Posh Nosh goes to Boston.
posted by codacorolla at 8:59 PM on July 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


Yikes.

even more yikes:
Surely the troops deserve better (though to be fair, I assume these particular veterans are probably Kinkade fans)
posted by Bwithh at 10:53 PM on July 19, 2011


"Its simplicity somehow fills all who see it with a complex mixture of feelings and emotions and makes a statement that has been true since the dawn of man."
posted by Bwithh at 10:55 PM on July 19, 2011


More topically, are there any Garfield Minus Garfield-esque Kincaid remixes out there on the innernets?

You might enjoy these Photoshop Phridays from Something Awful.
posted by naoko at 11:22 PM on July 21, 2011


tell me about moral art IndigoJones

Forgive me, I was unclear. I meant in the sense that good or bad taste may not be a reflection of personal morals on the part of the creator or the appreciator. Or are you just trying to make fun of me?

Art doesn't demand anything.


If you want to get anything out of it, it does. You don't pay attention and sit and think about. say, King Lear or Beethoven's Fifth, you miss a lot of what they have to offer. Contrast these with, say, The Jetsons and Yummy Yummy Yummy where you can extract next to nothing no matter how long you watch or listen. (You're being too literal here.)

mere pastimes and entertainment can be turned into the highest of art, if we will only search for it in them.


I'd argue rather that the quality may there all along in addition the the entertainment value. But I'm not going to accept that all mere past times and entertainment have that quality in them. Most mere pastimes and entertainments (and art, for that matter) are highly dispensable. Whatever the best efforts of the academics or pointy heads, if it don't have that swing, that je ne sais quoi, it will die in a few generations, or less.
posted by IndigoJones at 2:09 PM on July 24, 2011


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