Tag Archives: politics

political art is propaganda

Banksy

Google political art and this is the first thing you find. This is weak art. It doesn’t stand alone. It needs a caption.

I’m guessing Banksy is rich but I don’t know enough about him. Is he putting his money where his mouth is? Is he a philanthropist helping the marginalized people? I know if I had a ton of money I’d help the veterans who are struggling. I see them. I feel for them.

Will art like this change society? Do you think it’s possible to change society with a catchy slogan? I doubt it. I guess its possible to change yourself but did you ever try to change someone else? Am I right to think this art is only benefitting the guy who sells the posters? Please feel free to enlighten me if I’m wrong.

What if you feel ok with yourself? Would this make you want to change? Is the homeless veteran problem my fault? I don’t think so. Is poverty my fault? Is racism my fault? No. How can I change to make those things go away?

This is the kind of art that doesn’t last very long. It might be saved somehow even if it’s outside on a wall in the weather. Someone might put it in a museum but when this era is past it could go into a warehouse with all the other bad political propaganda art.

marsh sketch / debunking a famous quote

Do you remember that famous quote, “Art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable.” ?

sounds like b-s to me. It makes me think they want art to be political and that is not the main reason for art.

When I was in art school my wise teachers told us art serves 3 purposes, decoration, illustration and self expression. Self expression being the least important. It’s only the huge egos of the modern art world that think they can change society with a painting. And who cares about my self expression? I don’t have that kind of ego. I blame my parents. You might want to thank them. If an art viewer is savvy enough to analyze my paintings, there’s plenty of information in there about me. I can’t keep self expression out of it. I don’t need to deliberately make paintings expressing my moods.

Now, let’s say I know a disturbed person. Am I going to show them Starry Night and think that will comfort them? If I want to comfort someone who is disturbed I’ll find out what’s bugging them and try to find a real practical solution. If I showed Starry Night to a disturbed person and asked them if that comforts them they might say yes because they think I want to hear a yes. Then they go right back to their problems and forget Starry Night instantly.

What if I had some resentment to people who are comfortable? I don’t, but that would be political and if someone’s comfortable why should I try to ruin that for them. They’re not hurting me.

I don’t care really, if art metaphorically stomps on some high muckety muck’s toes. Whatever. I only want to say, if a quote sounds stupid, stop repeating that nonsense. Make art for illustration or decoration. Making the comfortable disturbed is a weak kind of art.