Thursday, January 6, 2011

Art History

      I don't think that I am making art in any kind of Historical context, and at the same time I know I am not making it in a vacuum.  So far the Great Oil Spill and our wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have not entered my work.  Maybe, anyway.  Maybe I am not as free and independent as I think I am?  I found a new Blog that discusses Art in the context of History ( and it is getting me to think!  Damn, I hate that!  Not only have I discovered that I have been trying to climb a mountain all my life when I should have been going around it, I also discover that I may not be immune to forces around me!
     My Art is in a response.  I am just a welder, that is all I pretend to be.  I am appalled when I see the mass import of iron work from China and Mexico.  I shudder when I see it in the stores and cringe a bit when I see it in your yard.  It is not well made.  It is poorly welded.  It is feeble at best and won't support itself, as art nor as a support for plants.  I worry about our resources and that these were not worth the diesel it cost to get them to us. I think of 140 million steel panels all identical and scattered all over the world.  Okay, I learned a lot from Miss Shipwreck's essay but it has left me feeling not more educated and smarter.  I am a victim!  I need a phsycotherapist who specializes is metal, understands what it is that I am trying to do.
     I am a one man war in a battle against junk.  When I am long gone and dead and if Art Historians ever find me (I can't really imagine them digging that deep!), I will be thrown into the era of mass importation.  One warrior amongst many who battled it out against this world of importation.  I know I do this that is why most of my Art is big.  If it can fit into those horrible, poorly made brown cardboard boxes from "overseas"
I lose interest it making it.  That is a response to History, isn't it?  Sign of the times and maybe a futile battle at that.
     I like to think my "other art" is different.  I took up painting about a year ago and with great purpose I don't investigate anybody.  I refuse to study any kind of painted art.  I don't want to know what they do or how they do it or what historical markers made an impression on them.  I am a virgin artist when it comes to paint.  I have no clue as to what I am doing, whether it is good or bad or indifferent.  I do it for fun only and it is not for sale.  Most of it isn't even real in the sense that you could touch it or see it in another light.  I paint away, happily, madly, carefree and without thought or obligation.  When it is done I take a photo of it and put it into my computer.  Sleeping maybe, like a virus.  Then I paint over it.  Some of my paintings are seven layers deep, quickly one after another.  The last one standing gets to live.  They are painted for my enjoyment
and maybe, by definition that means they are not art.  Somewhere I read that art must be shared to be art.
Anyway, Shipwreck's blog has made me think, and of course I curse her for that!  It is an interesting read so I am passing her blog on.  I want to fight her so bad.  She has taken my once happy carefree life and reduced it to circumstance.  My Other Blog is Here.


Clipped Wings said...

Ha ha're such a good read. I think if one is breathing, they're never immune to the forces around them, making their creations unique to them. Like you said, when you create a gate you need freedom to take it where your head and heart wants it to go. Your finished gate is is art at its finest. Critics come up with all kinds of summations about art; makes for a good read and selling point, but is that what really occupied the artist mind at the creation point? Who knows? The concept that art must be shared to be art is pure rubbish to me. The artist creates it, likes or dislikes it, it's art...just not shared art. I think you read too much, lol. I've looked back at many of your posts and you definitely are an artist, whether it is steelwork, cooking, gardening, whatever, you're pretty amazing to me.

stonepost said...

Ah, "Clipped Wings", now you have done it, I am madly in love with you! There is always more to a story. I knew "shipwrecked" when she was but a lass and I a young lad.

Kay said...

I sometimes wish I had never seen another artist's work so everything I do could be completely out of my own experience..but then I love art and art history and looking at art and getting ideas of how and what to my art will be derivative. As far as world events. I think about doing something as metaphor for what is going on, I think about making statements..but to tell the truth..I wore out the tshirts when I was young. I get screaming mad at things losing our rights so we can be safe..but I can't seem to get it into my I am not that artist. It would be funny to hear what the critics and curators would say if they see my stuff in say 100 years...I double dare them to come up with some deep passionate meaning to my animals and color. I don't paint that way..I just paint what I want.I added that blog to my follow list..will read her when I have some time! Thanks for the post!

stonepost said...

Kay, thanks for stopping by and for leaving a comment!!! More than anything it is when I know that I am read, I get the encourage to babble more and maybe get better at it.

Anonymous said...

Clipped Wings is quite quite correct Jerry, and the way I feel about self-styled critics who are filled with their own self-importance is that they can go and bite their bums!!! I am so sick to death of "Instant Art" to match the public's decor and I'm sick to death of "Flavour of the Month" art and artists who have been predetermined by the materialistic and self-important galleries and critics.

And we have a beautiful artwork on the wall right here in front of me that is the most precious artwork I have. It is a sheet of crumpled aluminium foil with a tree and a couple of leaves painted on it. THAT is priceless and one of the most beautiful possessions that I own!

You are unique :-)

Barbra Joan said...

I have to agree with Constance in her comment. I think it was just a few blogs ago that I mentioned how much I detest 'sofa art' . Art that is made to match the sofa. At one point in my life I actually worked for someone who did that sort of thing..
Do you think that the Masters where thinking to match some decor when they painted the most beautiful works of art to this day.?
I never took an art class,it just wasn't in the stars for me, and I admit my paintings are simple ..easy to understand .. Sunflowers, peonies, animals ,trees. Things that I see in life everyday. Not trying to make a big statement. I'm liking what I do.
I actually use to be reluctant to say I'd never been to art school.. but then you are not influenced by the right and wrongs, others peoples techniques struggle til YOU get it the way you feel it inside. Now thats not to say I don't admire artists who have formal education.. but for me I really could care less about critics and whats the trend this week.. I'll just paint my peonies, and sunflowers .. I see people smile when they look at it and sometimes I even get paid for it.!!!! thats enough for me..

stonepost said...

Barbra, love your art and you may have hit my point right on the nailhead as you often do. Cut through the clatter and tell it like it is. So where do artists like us, and we are many, fit into this scenery of "Art History"? I don't think alll art is "protest art" or much affected by History at all.

Chez said...

Jerry, do love your work. You appear to be a 'true' artisan.
Not much to say except that I have grave concerns for major structures using 'inferior' steel such as that coming out of China and Mexico. We have relatives that build bridges; they find it very hard to work with these materials whichy are inconsistent. How long will they last?
Continue to create and inspire..

Ruby said...

I happen to like what you do and the fact that your work can't be boxed and you utilize materials discarded!

What you produce in metal is unrivalled ... so never mind studying others.

And yes, history will record what you do because your structures will definitely outlast the test of time. Not like the little planter someone 'gifted' me. I didn't even use before the Chinese weld sucummed the pressures of atmosphere here in Canada.

Keep welding, keep painting. Your work seems to come from your heart and that is what makes it so important.

I will read the blog you have found, later, and let you know if it impresses me.

Barbra Joan said...

Your art WILL be here for a very long time. Who knows? maybe it too will be in an art history book?
but thats not why you produce it ... is it? I remember a comment you made to another blogger who was concerned with how many followers and comments were put on their blog.. You said its not the number thats important.. Its what you do...something to that effect.
Just dream everyday Jerry. !
It's now that matters . remember? your words.

T.K. said...

While reading this I couldn't help but think of the ceremonial sand art by the Navajo and the Tibetan monks.

They create these amazing works of art out of sand and as soon as they are finished they destroy them. The only one that ever sees them is whomever was present at the moment of creation. To them the meaning is in the creation process not the final product.

I think who ever said art has to be shared in order to be art didn't know what the they were talking about.

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stonepost said...

Pamo, I like you both! and I do make some $20 Art, even $10 Art, but it is still art, still well-made and hand crafted and a part of me, not made of prison labor, mass produced to arrive in a cardboard box. and I like colored pictures on the wall, even cheap ones. It is just that I like what the locals around here make. That is plenty good enough for me. Now, go take care of each other!

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Maundering mutterer said...

Enjoyment is an art in itself. Music is supposed to be an art, but when you've played the song, its over and will never be exactly the same again.
Your art? Man, it's art, whether you paint over it or not!

rama said...

Wow! so many comments, I like it and I like what you do as an artist and also what you write as a regular blogger.