Art & Aesthetics Art Blog
Art was no longer imitating life but vice versa, so Garathustra chucked it all and moved up north to live in a bat cave. He scrawled pictures of moose and beavers on the walls with wild berries and lead a hungry, horny, but mostly happy life for many years until he finally went nuts and came back to civilization where all that was left of art were video games and air guitar that anyone could play like a superstar.
"Art is dead" he proclaimed.
"WTF?" everyone twittered.
"Virtual reality cannot be without real reality." Thus spake Garathustra.
Old-schoolers still slung paint while the new ones pushed pixels. Some had artistic vision and others, not so much. Art became a competitive sport. Flame wars broke out on the Internet so Gar left cyberspace for nature. Hanging out with the plein aire crowd he was content to memorize the scenery instead of painting it. When they booted him out, he hooked up with some figurists but got on their bad side waving his arms all "look at me - draw me" and stuff. Thus began Garathustra's downward spiral.
He tried watercolors, duck and trout stamps, but his masks were gummy and the competition stiff. Auction houses were selling pickled sheep for big bucks so he tried conceptual art with cow pies. He showed at a gallery called The Pied Cow and stunk the place up. So he turned off his mind, relaxed, and floated downstream. He slept under bridges and on sidewalks and in abandoned cars. He took lots of catnaps but things always seemed the same when he awoke: Artificial. Being philosophical, like so many artists, he fell prey to existentialism and convinced himself that there is no good art or bad art, just art that bangs your gong - or not.
Garathustra developed an arcane visual language to express his pleasure and pain. A picture is worth a thousand words but just when he was getting some traction with the critics the economy tanked and he couldn't get a sawbuck for his abstracts. He was despondent. Pretty soon he's drawing menus and manuals and hawking advice on the street corner. "Never match wits with idiots" he__™d say, "but don__™t put all your colored eggs in the intelligence basket. Paint with emotion. Temper those Apollonian sensibilities with a Dionysian splatter-fest now and then. Get down and dirty.___ Thus spake Garathustra.
He painted in the moment, in the zone, working with live models or from photographs or just making stuff up in his head. He got all bohemian, tattered and torn, but then he got lucky when - unlike that other thustra, that misogynistic figment of Nietzsche's imagination - Garathustra found a woman, a real nice gal. O.K., she found him. They did Day-Glo body painting and other stuff that never saw the black light of day but soon ditched that scene and started anew.
Garathustra wanted artists to rule the world (what__™s wrong with that picture?) but with power comes responsibility. He cleaned up his act and went on the lecture circuit. "Make love not war" became his shibboleth but in a pinch he made the first punch count.
"In a food fight, put your money on the hambone." Thus spake Garathustra.
Funny how things turn out; he coined that phrase into a retirement fund and back to the cozy cave he went with his berwoman slash interior decorator. On a laptop they ordered the perfect art to hang over the couch in Plato™s den: art that spoke to them, real art by real artists from vast online emporiums like ArtId.
Meanwhile, the happy couple still makes hand puppets in the firelight and draws stick-figure beasts with berries. They joined a social network to keep in touch and market their own brand of swag. Some artists are ahead of the curve and others reinvent themselves at will. Timing is everything.
Art, like life, is a process. It__™s not what you see, but how you see it. It__™s not always a pretty picture but "art is dead?" my ass. Long live art!