Thursday, April 04, 2013

Appreciation of the Arts

The left is obsessed with money.

If public art spending is not increasing at a faster rate than the economy, then the greedy politicos at groups like the Utah Film Society launch forth with a piercing whine about how Art is in a Recession.

I look around and see more people actively engaged in creating artistic expression than at any time in history.

I am left wondering. Is the artistic sense of a society judged by the amount of taxpayer dollars spent on art or is artistic sense a matter of individual appreciation of art?

Leftists claim we are in an art recession because there has been a dip in state spending on art.

But is art really just about money as the Utah Film Society claims?

I am inclined to say that art is about the extent to which individuals appreciate and are engaged in the artistic process. Quite frankly, furniture makers, home designers and even business owners who see their business as art often have a bigger impact on society that a person who receives an art grant from the state.

I believe that a society with millions of people actively engaged in artistic endeavors or as patrons is more artistic than one with a few individuals exalted with grand titles from the states and pockets lined with taxpayer dollars.

I believe that the best way to improve arts is to create markets for art and channels for artistic expression.

I further claim that, when the state takes money from the masses to give grants to a select few, the state impoverishes the artistic sense of the people at large.

If we wish to promote art, I wish people would change the conversation from one about how we can get more state money into the hands of a small ruling elite to one about how can we elevate art appreciation in society as a whole.

Is Art in a Recession?

I routinely look at art sharing sites like ArtWanted, Yessy and even the Wild-West Playground of tumblr.

I see a flourishing art scene with more people actively participating in the creation of their artistic vision than at any time in world history.

There are so many exciting things happening, it is hard to name them all. For example, a Park City group called The Painters Mix. organizing events that pair a fine wine and painting. People meet for an afternoon, drink the wine and try to recreate the painting.

Many people are using something called "Pinterest" which I just haven't had the time to investigate.

Despite this boom in art creation, the local commissars are making a squealing noise  about how art is in a recession.

Apparently, after decades of wasteful spending of taxpayer dollars, some government agencies are being forced to cut their budgets.

They always cut high profile art spending first.

This means that the politically connected drones who leach off the government in the name of art are sharing some of the financial pain that Main Street businesses have felt in these last few years.

Later this month, the Utah Film Society will engage in a public whine (in a state owned building at taxpayers' expense) about how art is in recession simply because it is harder to get taxpayer dollars for art.

These bastards have everything thrown at their feet and what do they do? They squeal and whine. How pathetic?!

Art today is highly politicized. At the University of Utah, I was taught that the primary purpose of art was to attack the values of the bourgeoisie and to advance the state.

This idea is manifest in our government. Privately owned art is treated as a luxury good and taxed at a high rate. Public art, which is primarily left leaning, gets loaded with subsidies.

Our government tax of private art creation and subsidy of public art has become a tool through which the ruling class rewards friends and punishes enemies.

I've actively participated in and supported art my whole life.

I say that the real artistic sense of a nation is not judged by the percent of taxpayer dollar spent on art, but by the number of people who are actively engaged in creating their artistic visions. I do not see a recession, I see a long continuing boom as people pursue new ways to express their ideas in new media.

My only real complaint with the art-scene is that today's artists have been trained to use art as a tool to tear down their society, when artistic talent is better spent elevating society. This game of using art to tear down came academics who applied Marxian thought to art.

Anyway, while the left obsesses over the amount of taxpayer money spent on art, I invite people to go out and look at both the online and local art scene. More people are actively engaged in expressing their artistic visions than at any time in history. It is a market that is growing exponentially.

The biggest problem faced by the arts community, is that the left has filled people with the absurd notion that art must be free. Government subsidizing of politically correct art has undermined the ability of artists to make money in a free market.

It is extremely hard to make a living in the art world when the public has the expectation that your creations be make free for their amusement. This expectation that art must be made free was created by the people who are whining about a reduction in their subsidies.