Art or Artists

A common misunderstanding is that art is whatever artists dream up. Actually, art just rolls along under its own momentum, over hill and dale, and an “artist” is someone who gets in the way and then pays the price. At least this is the organicist view, standing for the freedom of art in an all too administered society.

Frank Stella, from Had Gadya “A hungry cat ate up the goat” 1982-84

When the work is literary, as this example, an illustration for a Jewish folk song, then the organicist type of autonomy becomes complicated and interesting. After all, everything gets eaten up eventually, good art and bad, artist and art.

Year swallows year, and licks its lips,
Then down the gullet of next year slips.
(Nash)

Artist as excrement of time.

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