Why Is Modern Art So Bad?

Discussion in 'Art, Media & Photography' started by bostjan, Apr 4, 2017.

  1. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    I believe in economic freedom. If someone has ten million dollars to spend on an empty cardboard box with birdcrap on the outside of it, thinking it's some meaningfully artistic statement about consumerism and our reliance on logistics in the globalized economy, then so be it. I also believe strongly in freedom of expression, so if I see someone in the news spending that kind of money on that kind of bullshit, then I will exercise my right to call the buyer a numbskull for doing so. I'm also a capital opportunist, so if it's my shitty box up for auction, then please buy it, and spend as much as you'd like. :lol:

    Art is about as subjective as anything gets, I suppose, so you like, you don't like it, or somewhere in between, then either you don't get why other people like it or don't get why other people don't like it... something like a comic book, though, - I don't think most readers buy them solely for the visual art, even if they are buying it over the alternative, for the fact that it has visual art in it. It's about gripping plot, compelling characters, and then the visual aesthetic. Do you agree?

    An artist for a comic book is likely hired or not based on deadlines and work ethic as much or more than it is about the artist's level of realism or knowledge of human anatomy. If you ever question that, think of South Park, a show which has been tremendously popular, which uses a style of artwork that is distinctive, yet laughably rudimentary, but because of such rudimentary artwork, the creators can exercise more autonomy over their creation and still crank out an episode per week in real time.

    Then you have things like this, which make me shake my head:

    [​IMG]
    ...or maybe it's just a fun slapstick joke?!
     
  2. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    Again, I'm not here to defend anyone and I agree that Liefeld's art has some... pointy things there. Only that, as I do not know anything about his objectives when drawing/illustrating, therefore I cannot stand for the statement that his art is shit. That's all. Also, it is thought that El Greco deformities are due to some eye problem and not because of intentionality, which makes some sense since there is a pattern in them.

    ... and that's why they have a hard time understanding modern art. I'd also correct the "To some" for "To most"...

    Understanding that modern art is not only about the object is halfway to get where most are simply lost.
     
  3. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    ^ You're still doing the thing I'm talking about though. You're deciding that people are understanding art the wrong way. Which is not how (IMO) art works, modern or otherwise. That's a large part of why it comes off as pretentious nonsense- it insists that there's a correct way to receive art, and that someone gets to decide what this correct way is for other people. There may be a correct way to understand an aritst's intention, but that doesn't stop a piece of art from just being bad art from any given person's point of view.

    If someone randomly splatters some paint outside and calls it art, I don't care if the location, timing, political climate and the color of the artists underwear that day make some kind of "deep" statement- I'm not going to be convinced it's not garbage. One persons deep interpretation of said garbage has no power to elevate it above the status of garbage in anyone else's eyes.
     
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  4. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire 8 string hoarder

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    Oh I have no problem with people trying to sell literal shit (Marzoni's shit in a can sold for over 150K GBP at sothebys btw), it's the pretension and attitude some artists/curators display acting like there's more to the art than there really is. If I draw a box, it's a box, it's not some cockamamie metaphor for society's attempt to stifle my creativity. Humans have this insane obsession with prescribing meaning to everything and the art world fully manipulates that.
    As far as Liefeld getting work, yes, you're correct, he works hard, puts out a lot of work and is the epitome of the phrase "throw enough shit at the wall and some will stick". The whole reason I even brought him up was to show 2 other prolific comic artists who also get metric tons of work but have superior technical ability. I was more decrying the fact that there are people out there that willingly hamstring themselves and refuse to advance their technical ability as though it would change their personal artistic style. It's like playing guitar and saying that I don't need to know scales/ how to tap, slide, do harmonics or any of the fancy shredding stuff since it's not "my style". Having that extra bit of technicality allows you to express yourself with more tools than just strumming some basic chords. You can take someone with a solid technical background ie Paul Gilbert and pare their style down, but it's far harder to take Bob Dylan and try to make him play Paul Gilbert esque runs/songs. It's the same with visual arts. Jean Ingres had impeccable line control while someone like Henri Toulouse Lautrec or John Singer Sargent tended to have a looser style in their drawings. The main thing is that they all started with the technical foundation and proceeded to deviate from there. That's why I've been harping about Liefeld for pages, he lacks that foundation and it's especially obvious when he's drawing human anatomy.
    Typical Ingres:
    [​IMG]
    this is about as "loose" as Ingres' linework gets:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Lautrec:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Sargent:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Some of my personal favorites from sargent:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Anyways, I don't know how my mini-tirade about people trying to justify their poor technique as their style somehow devolved into this pile of posts so I think I'm done trying to give my opinion about this subject.
    TLDR: A technical foundation is important when drawing. You can always deviate from classical technique into other styles so long as you retain the core understanding of perspective,contour, contrast,etc. It's nigh impossible to do the opposite where you have a limited understanding and try to make more technical art. I've seen it time and time again with people not willing to put in the time/effort to develop technicality and then floundering when they try to do a technical piece.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2017
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  5. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    I am not, I'm not deciding what others should think, only adding the fact that modern art is no longer ONLY about the object. I'm am therefore adding possibilities to the thought of what modern art is. The "no longer only about the object" doesn't excludes "being about the object also", so I'm not excluding, I'm opening possibilities of interpretation, so showing a path to a deeper understanding. It is up to you or whomever wants to, to travel that road if it makes sense. One is free to be in the "art is only about the object" thought, I don't really care. However, then, you might be in the same train as Liefeld, though through the viewer's perspective.

    @KnightBrolaire all true. So? It is art, which means that, as any commercial area, the public has a voice. There seams to have been enough sales for Liefeld to prosper. Does it mean that he isn't legit, even without all those tools under his hood? Look at Kurt Cobain, he got more than most of us will ever get... The "anti-hero" sells well in all art forms.
     
  6. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    No, but you're heavily implying that taking a non-deep look at modern art is misinterpreting it.
    Art is not deep by virtue of being art. Sometimes that depth isn't there. Sometimes that depth is so buried or obscured or overshadowed that it might as well not be there at all. You can just as easily say that I lack a deeper understanding as I could say that you've imposed your own "depth" that didn't exist in the first place.
    I'd like to be able to say people don't do this... but lots of people do this. :lol: I don't think it's an entirely invalid view - I can get along playing guitar and expressing myself without being great at sweep picking, but I certainly don't go as far as completely ignoring the fundamentals of the instrument because "that's not my thing maaaaan". At the end of the day, I guess it doesn't hurt anyone to enjoy their art whatever way they want to.
     
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  7. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    :agreed:
    When you have a guy, like the Look Mickey example, who can paint technically amazing paintings, make a simplified Sunday-Papers-looking piece, people lose their minds. It happens in music, too. The drummer from 3 Doors Down does some kinda nifty stuff, but then you hear him play in Martone and he just rips. Mike Mushok of Staind used to play with Tony MacAlpine. I imagine he can rip, too. Most guitarists in these commercial bands probably can rip faces off, but just don't, because they know what suits consumer-grade music. Same in visual art - being able to pull of techniques from here to the Sun and back doesn't mean every piece should rival the Apollo moon missions in complexity.
    On the other hand, I think we all know popular musicians who couldn't pull off anything any more technically demanding than what they are known for doing. Some of them aren't even rightly good enough to pull off what they are attempting to do in the first place. But whatever they attempted to do, ended up actually being something-or-other that got them wherever they are.
    Cobain's name keeps coming up over and over, like he's some sort of modern art guy... I think the distinction may be more like "look at this guy who technically could barely sing and barely play, who gets all of this credit as a musical genius." Nirvana didn't invent grunge, they just were in the right place and time to become the poster children for the movement, sure, but it seems to me like Cobain is more the guy who is touted as the guy who is touted for being a genius than he is actually touted for being a genius. Maybe I'm wrong about that, but, I was actually playing out in bands when the whole grunge movement thing unfolded, even if I was not at all connected with it at the time.
     
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  8. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    It definitely took me a while to realize there's a distinction between "a generally good artist" and "an artist who can do that thing well". I can't remember where I saw it, but I came across a page a while ago that shows some reasonably well known artists doing something in the style or method they're known for, then trying to do something completely outside of their range and it looks as bad as if I had tried to do it. Any artists I've had to work with were seemingly hired/selected in particular for their range - being able to match guides and stay on brand, or adapt to new projects quickly, things like that. At this point I recognize that adaptability and range as a distinct skill, outside of being good at any particular technique or style - and that applies to music or art or whatever else.
     
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  9. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire 8 string hoarder

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    I'm guilty of it to an extent as well. I don't know shit about music theory, but I do know a lot of different techniques and scales from playing classical guitar/electric for years now. It's not like you can't succeed with a minimal technical foundation, it just makes it a lot harder to express your ideas imo, especially in the visual arts.
     
  10. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    No I'm not. I'm saying that ART has evolved. You either follow the evolution or not. That is entirely up to you. If you don't follow the evolution, it is very likely that you won't understand some art expressions, same happens with music, obviously.

    Again, obvious statement, but I'm not saying you (in particular) is lacking anything. My first small post in this thread stated something like "the purpose of art is to bring joy" and therefore many times (not always) it has to be seen as a joke, to be laugh at. I'm not imposing anything, only adverting that your (?) point of view of "art being about the object" no longer holds absolute and is over 200 years old (kind of a romantic thought)... the art world has evolved beyond. Who's following it is not of my concern nor judgment.

    :::

    As I see, many of you are too serious about art. Fuck seriousness, mistakes and bad stuff are good to look at, make us realize how good the opposite is. Virtuosos, anti-heros, they all have their place in the art world, why the hell not? Art joins people, does not segregates nor labels them, that is society doings... art is freedom and respect, never less. If one doesn't get this, maybe he is less about one or both of these concepts.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2017
  11. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    No it hasn't. :2c: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Artists have changed. Art has not.

    ^This statement is exactly you imposing a rule on how art is meant to be understood, despite claiming you're not doing that. If there were no imposed rules on how to interpret art, there would be no such thing as "misunderstanding" art. You can't misunderstand something that doesn't have a defined "correct understanding".

    ^ See?

    I never said it was absolute. It never was absolute. But it's perfectly legit for someone to receive art in this way- you can't dictate what art is or isn't about for someone else. If, for a particular person, art is about just the object - than that's just what it is. Let them appreciate things for what they are on their own terms. Or, let them think it's garbage.

    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ See my first comment.

    I make no assumptions about the level of seriousness of a comment on the internet. I don't take art very seriously at all in 99% of cases.
     
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  12. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    Well, that's just your opinion, as the previous was mine. Feel free to quote me out of context to argue your own point of view. Think whatever you like about art and please report back your findings. Peace out.
     
  13. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    I mean, how you interpret art is subjective, but who said what and who said whatever else in a thread is not at all subjective. I'm not really clear to which you were referring.
     
  14. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    My point wasn't to argue against your opinion on how to interpret art, but just to point out that saying art is entirely subjective but then also saying it's possible to misinterpret art presents a contradiction. Either it's entirely subjective, or it's not. If your opinion is that it's part subjective, and part context, then that's fine. But if it's entirely subjective then you can't impose the rule that the context has to be included in the evaluation.

    It's perfectly fine if you think I don't "understand" art. If there really is any deeper meaning to modern art to some people, then I fully admit that I don't understand it. But I reserve the right to judge something I don't fully understand, in the context that a full understanding isn't really needed when it comes to personal art-valuation systems.

    Like if someone hates the music I play or listen to, they think it's garbage because to them because "all that screamo nonsense is just noise and unlistenable" - despite having demonstrated a clear lack of deep understanding of the subject (metal is not "screamo", but people who don't listen to it will call it that because they lack the vocabulary to properly describe it) - it doesn't invalidate their opinion. It's legit for them to call it garbage. To them it is garbage. There's zero requirement for them to understand it on a deeper level for their assessment to be valid. Maybe a little disrespectful to tell a musician to their face that their work is garbage, but no amount of educating them on the deeper meaning, cultural significance, and community values surrounding metal and it's scene are going to convince them to evaluate the music itself as any more than "screamo garbage". And that's fine. I think country music is garbage. And 99.9% of rap.
     
  15. Patri_MA_Ruiz

    Patri_MA_Ruiz SS.org Regular

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    Hello there! In my opinion modern art is out of control by now.
    Modern art started "as a revolution", to make art more "affordable" for everyone. For example, "Puppy" by Jeff Koons, (a huge dog sculpture with flowers all over him), is a piece that everyone can understand. Modern art is a way to defend that anything could be art if there's thought behind it.
    The real problem is when people start using that as an excuse so they don't have to learn any technique...
     
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  16. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire 8 string hoarder

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    EXACTLY
     
  17. Patri_MA_Ruiz

    Patri_MA_Ruiz SS.org Regular

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    People believe that saying "oh no it's my way to express myself" other people will consider their art as good. But that is not true; the problem is, art consumers (most of them) don't really know how it works, and the fact that a piece is in a museum or the same piece costs thousands of dollars is enough for them to consider it as "good art". Nowadays the value of everything is measured in money, not talent or hard work.
     
  18. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Absolutely.

    Of course, at the risk of sounding too pedantic, the value of everything is always measured in money, it's just that talent and hard work used to better equate to wider exposure, and therefore, higher pricetags. As it got easier for artists to get attention by doing simply more outrageous antics, regardless of the quality of technique.
     

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