headlines | about |

The death of the artist


Some people are touting the death of the artist. This is where everyone is creative. No more need for exceptional individuals. Only organizers, only curators. We can all work together. No one is special. That’s because we’re all special because we’re all the same. Yeah right. I bumped into a friend of mine, he’s a painter but he does high end cabinets to make a living. He lives in a tiny apartment in the Lower East Side. He gave up painting because he couldn’t afford the rent on a studio. Now he make’s his images on computer. They’re the same but not in paint. I guess he didn’t hear about the death of the artist yet. But the real question is the idea of value. Who decides what has value? This gets right to the basics. What is art worth? What is its value? Is it a commodity? Is it a service? It’s the same thing as saying what is a person worth. What is their value? You can say that a person is a valuable member of society but what does that mean? Is the only value to a person their labor value? If they have children are they valuable because they care for the children, raising the next generation? Do you pick fruit? Is that valuable? Do you make the powerful feel important? Who determines what you are worth? That’s the issue. It’s always a struggle. Some people struggle for power. They gain power by devaluing others. Those in power devalue you or rather they take power from you. Or you give them power. Maybe. Or maybe it’s an illusion like value. These are very dangerous times. That is because there is no real value. Or rather anything that’s a market can be inflated by both need and desire. It can also crash, becoming worthless. That’s very dangerous. You have no control over the value of what you have and what you do. You only have a desire or a need that has to be fulfilled.