The meaning of a work of art – that is, the meaning intended by the artist, not the meaning assigned to it by the audience – is often a matter of context. Not just art, but human expression in general. It all boils down to context.
There are about a million reasons why those sparkly-vampire books (and the movies they spawned) are stupid. Continue reading
John Lydon is one of my personal heroes. As the singer for the Sex Pistols in the 70s, he redefined what music could be. Now that he’s older and has weird warts on his face, he’s able to cash in on his youthful fame and continues to be blunt, irreverent and keenly intelligent underneath the leering eyeballs. Back in the 70s, he trolled the shit out of the media before anyone knew what a troll was. He would vacillate between dodgy and frank – in some interviews he would smirk and avoid giving direct answers, and in others he would make very glib observations about politics and the media that people found shocking as hell. When he formed Public Image Limited, the band itself was a troll-y statement on pop music – we’re not a music band, we’re a business that sells image and nothing else. He has always been difficult towards TV interviewers – bumming smokes off of Larry King during interviews, cussing out the guy from Much Music and walking out of the room. He’s never shy about turning the camera back on the media and calling bullshit when he sees it.
Gosh, where to begin…
Ok, first I’ll go over the positives. Points for casting Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy. She’s cute and fun. Another point for the mechanical web-shooters instead of the bogus spinneret patches on the wrist. Spiders don’t shoot web from their wrists, and if Peter Parker was to develop a mutant biological analogue of a spinneret, it would more likely be on his ass. The Stan Lee cameo is fairly well-timed and funny. I kinda wonder what those massive 80’s-style headphones are plugged into when he walks away.
That’s it for the good parts. Onto the criticisms. Continue reading
I got bullied in high school. Not as much as that poor girl in BC (and I am by no means trying to belittle that case), but by a few pieces of human shit in particular, and pretty much only in Grade 9. I hated nearly every minute of Grade 9. I won’t name any names because bullshit is best forgotten. Be warned: F-bombs follow.
Elitism pisses me off. I don’t think I made that sufficiently clear in my last post, so here is some clarification.
I think the world should have evolved us beyond this stupid tribal behaviour by now, but it happens everywhere. One guy’s group is “better” than everyone else for some arbitrary reason or another, and that person then seems to feel as though he has the right to act like a jerk to everyone else. I’ve seen this happen in a lot of areas in life – it’s not limited to one activity. That’s the crap part about it. It recognizes no boundaries.
I got a visit from Scott today. That was awesome, haven’t seen him in forever.
“Who’s this Scott character?” asked nobody.
Well, Scott is living proof that not all D&D and table-top RPG players are socially maladjusted nerds. He’s happily married to a lovely young woman with whom he has an adorable baby girl, has a normal job, dresses stylishly, and he enjoys assuming the role of a magic-wielding warrior cleaving his way through imaginary orcs and shit. A cool guy who is missed since he moved out to BC.
So basically, there are two opposed schools of thought on “what is art.”
One group, which is pretty much everybody, holds to the belief that art is this decorative thing with colours and shapes and whatnot. And this is fine. These people buy art because they like how it looks or sounds or tastes or feels or smells. Art for the senses.
The other group, which is pretty much just artists and “intellectuals,” holds to the belief that Art is this secret club that only really clever people can get into and appreciate, and that it is philosophy and science and religion all rolled into one and expressed through mundane sensory media. Again, this is fine. It challenges the way we see our world, our culture and ourselves. It pushes boundaries and invents new ways of experiencing the subjective whatever of the holy Art. These are the people who pay millions of dollars for pictures of squares or a stack of felt in the middle of a floor because they mean something.
Not everyone falls wholly into one school of thought or the other. And this, also, is fine. These people have a broader and perhaps more intense appreciation of art than would be considered “average,” but without the raw elitism.
Anyway, long story short, I hate “conceptualism.” People can make art that is both pretty AND meaningful and intellectually challenging and not pure “commercial” whatever. You don’t have to be Thomas Kincaide OR Joseph Kosuth. Whatever it is that you really dig, there are a million other people who feel the same way, and probably websites devoted to it somewhere. Don’t be afraid to admit you like something if you think it’s awesome just because some snobby asshole might look down his nose at you because of it. Flaming skulls are awesome. Dragons holding crystal balls on mountaintops are awesome. Rainbow kittens riding unicorns are… well, not awesome to me. At all. Pretty much the exact opposite of awesome, really. But if you like them, they’re awesome. Screw the critics and elites.