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Author Topic: Painting as Art  (Read 587 times)

Rob C

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Painting as Art
« on: May 16, 2019, 04:03:43 am »

"I'm not sure why anyone would want to paint an Impressionist painting today. This makes just as much sense as building a 1970s era automobile. An interesting exercise in nostalgia, probably marketable to a modest audience, but ultimately an era of expression which has worked itself out fairly thoroughly.

Note that I distinguish between "Impressionism" and "Impressionistic" -- the latter, being a borrowing of style and conceptual notes from the former, is very much still with us periodically. The ideas live on, the actual movement is rightly concluded." .............  amolitor

The above extract, from the recent/current thread about a Canadian prize for the new school of blank photography, has made me wonder about the way people look at art, whether as an isolated painting or photograph, valid on its own merits, or whether simply as a collection of stuff within a genre, and thus validated not by its individuality, but by its mere membership within a grouping.

As for Andrews direct question, could it not be that the broad style is simply one that appeals to the painter who might use it, and is also the natural result of the way he does his thing?

Is the suggestion, therefore, that a painter should just paint in order to conform to a current stylism, and to be up to date with everyone else who is painting and conforming? Is that a justification for uniformity, the communism of art?

Personally, it strikes me as the single most powerful turn-off to being a painter - any sort of artist - that I could imagine.

And in that respect, photography, specifically, is no different to painting.

"Note that I distinguish between "Impressionism" and "Impressionistic" -- the latter, being a borrowing of style and conceptual notes from the former, is very much still with us periodically. The ideas live on, the actual movement is rightly concluded."  ......... amolitor

Were you thinking, then, of somebody ripping off a direct copy? Other than as an exerecise for a student, why would they? It hardly belongs within the same conversation, which is of contemporary styles, not counterfeiting. It's as if you are saying something and then immediately discrediting it in the next paragraph.

Rob

amolitor

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2019, 11:45:39 am »

Impressionism is a pretty specific thing. It includes a set of techniques, a philosophy of what the painting is supposed to be about, ideas about what constitute proper subject matter, and probably more besides.

If you simply drag the whole apparatus out and paint like that, well, that is a fine thing. You will probably enjoy yourself, and there's a good chance that people will like your paintings. I am pretty sure there are at least a half dozen people in my small town who are doing more or less exactly that.

As serious art, though, it's played out. If you drag out the entire apparatus, all you're going to wind up with as output is things that look like second-rate Monets, maybe with a dash of Turner and a little bit Renoir. You won't find anything new to say, more or less by definition. The envelope is small, if you use the whole thing, and it's been explored thoroughly.

You can drag out the philosophical underpinnings, and portray bullfighting -- that's Impressionistic, not Impressionism. It's also Ernst Haas.

The apparatus of Impressionism has a lot of parts, and you can use them, retask them for other work, and create things that are both new and interesting, and also hearken back to Impressionism. Ditto other Art Movements. This is how these things evolve.
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rabanito

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2019, 02:05:40 pm »


If you simply drag the whole apparatus out and paint like that, well, that is a fine thing. You will probably enjoy yourself, and there's a good chance that people will like your paintings. I am pretty sure there are at least a half dozen people in my small town who are doing more or less exactly that.

As serious art, though, it's played out. If you drag out the entire apparatus, all you're going to wind up with as output is things that look like second-rate Monets,

Does this mean that if Monet were by some miracle painting in your small town just now, his paintings wouldn't mean a thing ?
Or if I discover a Monet under the bed of my deceased grandfather it would be only of historical value? A curiosity?

Yes, probably it would be like that...
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petermfiore

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2019, 02:11:41 pm »

Does this mean that if Monet were by some miracle painting in your small town just now, his paintings wouldn't mean a thing ?
Or if I discover a Monet under the bed of my deceased grandfather it would be only of historical value? A curiosity?

Yes, probably it would be like that...

Monet the real Monet? He would be about 175 now...That would be something!

Peter

amolitor

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2019, 03:44:09 pm »

Does this mean that if Monet were by some miracle painting in your small town just now, his paintings wouldn't mean a thing ?
Or if I discover a Monet under the bed of my deceased grandfather it would be only of historical value? A curiosity?

Yes, probably it would be like that...

It sounds as if you think you've foxed me, somehow, but I don't quite see it.

If it was Just More Monet, it would be an expensive historical curiosity, yes. We have a great deal of Monet, and we pretty much understand what he was on about. Unless the new painting was some radical departure, it would be treated as confirmation of things we already fully grasp.

This doesn't seem very controversial to me.
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faberryman

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #5 on: May 16, 2019, 03:59:27 pm »

Impressionism is a pretty specific thing. It includes a set of techniques, a philosophy of what the painting is supposed to be about, ideas about what constitute proper subject matter, and probably more besides.

If you simply drag the whole apparatus out and paint like that, well, that is a fine thing. You will probably enjoy yourself, and there's a good chance that people will like your paintings. I am pretty sure there are at least a half dozen people in my small town who are doing more or less exactly that.

As serious art, though, it's played out. If you drag out the entire apparatus, all you're going to wind up with as output is things that look like second-rate Monets, maybe with a dash of Turner and a little bit Renoir. You won't find anything new to say, more or less by definition. The envelope is small, if you use the whole thing, and it's been explored thoroughly.

You can drag out the philosophical underpinnings, and portray bullfighting -- that's Impressionistic, not Impressionism. It's also Ernst Haas.

The apparatus of Impressionism has a lot of parts, and you can use them, retask them for other work, and create things that are both new and interesting, and also hearken back to Impressionism. Ditto other Art Movements. This is how these things evolve.
I wish someone would explain the "apparatus" of contemporary photography. I'm not seeing one.

rabanito

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #6 on: May 16, 2019, 04:01:32 pm »

Monet the real Monet? He would be about 175 now...That would be something!

Peter

It says "by some miracle". Check it.

We call it a "thought experiment" or "Gedankenexperiment" :-)

Wikipedia:
A thought experiment (German: Gedankenexperiment) considers some hypothesis, theory,or principle for the purpose of thinking through its consequences.
Examples of thought experiments include Schrödinger's cat, illustrating quantum indeterminacy through the manipulation of a perfectly sealed environment and a tiny bit of radioactive substance, and Maxwell's demon, which attempts to demonstrate the ability of a hypothetical finite being to violate the 2nd law of thermodynamics.


I'm not Schrödinger nor Maxwell nor Einstein, of course, but this device is used very often also by laymen like myself  :)
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amolitor

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #7 on: May 16, 2019, 04:06:44 pm »

The majority of MFA students (and MFA graduates) proposing to do Serious Photography Work have no apparatus as such, although they have an approach of sorts.

The goal in these degenerate times is to develop your own unique voice, vision, way of working, and so on. The result is that one:

1. Selects one of 3-4 acceptable political topics.
2. Finds a camera.
3. Takes a bunch of shitty pictures of nothing.
4. Writes a lengthy "text" filled with dog-whistle phrases referring loosely to #1 above.

Refusing to explain yourself further is de riguer and contemporary criticism also declines to seek explanations, sticking merely to describing things as good and bad, based largely on how much #1 aligns with the critic's ideas.

I wish I was joking, but this is literally an accurate description of a great deal of what is going on at the lower to mid levels in terms of, say, how much money the artist is making.

At the top end of the cash pyramid, it's something of a different story most of the time. There's some sort of conceptual component that can actually be articulated. This is not to suggest that a clearly articulated conceptual framework is sufficient, it is demonstrably not. But it is a requirement for the highest degrees of success in this sense.

In all cases the work is, essentially, conceptual art rather than what you (most likely) think of as photography.
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rabanito

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #8 on: May 16, 2019, 04:09:46 pm »

It sounds as if you think you've foxed me, somehow, but I don't quite see it.

By no means. Don't take it personally.
Asked only that you elaborate on what you wrote before
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amolitor

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #9 on: May 16, 2019, 04:18:12 pm »

Monet is maybe a bad example here, because we have an appalling amount of Monet lying around. New Vermeers are potentially more interesting, and van Meergeren illustrates pretty much exactly what happens.
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petermfiore

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #10 on: May 16, 2019, 07:20:05 pm »

It says "by some miracle". Check it.

We call it a "thought experiment" or "Gedankenexperiment" :-)

Wikipedia:
A thought experiment (German: Gedankenexperiment) considers some hypothesis, theory,or principle for the purpose of thinking through its consequences.
Examples of thought experiments include Schrödinger's cat, illustrating quantum indeterminacy through the manipulation of a perfectly sealed environment and a tiny bit of radioactive substance, and Maxwell's demon, which attempts to demonstrate the ability of a hypothetical finite being to violate the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

I'm not Schrödinger nor Maxwell nor Einstein, of course, but this device is used very often also by laymen like myself  :)


I'm well aware of the concept. I said that, because that's exactly what would have to happen for him to make it today...

Peter
« Last Edit: May 16, 2019, 07:29:42 pm by petermfiore »
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rabanito

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2019, 03:35:38 am »


I'm well aware of the concept.

Peter

Sorry Peter. It was not my intention to lecture you.
I apologize
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Rob C

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #12 on: May 17, 2019, 04:14:57 am »

What it appears to boil down to, then, is that today's art scene consists of a cabal of monetized wanking and procuring.

As ever then, it could be seen to be the case that the middle-men, the dealers and agents, are the devils incarnate, manipulating and destroying the very thing they profess to love. But hey, are they not really bankers as much as wankers? It seems that when too much filthy lucre enters any system that it brings it to its knees and pushes its face into the gutter.

That said, worse being in the gutter without any filthy lucre.

;-)

« Last Edit: June 18, 2019, 09:10:46 am by Rob C »
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petermfiore

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Re: Painting as Art
« Reply #13 on: May 17, 2019, 07:03:39 am »

Sorry Peter. It was not my intention to lecture you.
I apologize

I appreciate that Rabanito, very much.

Peter
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