Duchamp did that in 1917...fully one-hundred years ago. He actually called it "anti-art". At the time, it was quite provocative.Usedtoposthere said:At SFMOMA, hubby and I took a picture of the two urinals fastened to a wall. Not in the men's room. In an exhibit space. I wonder if anybody has peed in them.
NINETY percent.Skip Knox said:Maybe Sturgeon's Law will help: seventy percent of everything is crap.
I'm not sure that there's ever been a lot of financial stature associated with Art of any kind- it's just that making money didn't used to be the sole criteria by which people judged whether something was worth pursuing or not. In the 18th and 19th centuries- and at at least for the first third or so of the 20th- being able to play an instrument was a standard expectation of middle class people. Both my parents learned to read music in public school (one in Montana and one in California), my mother at one time hoped to be a concert pianist and two of my grandparents (both raised on farms in Kansas) played piano very well. Playing piano was required in most places in order to get a certificate to teach school. Likewise, a knowledge of perspective and the ability to draw at least competently was an expected 'accomplishment' of educated people that all children learned in school. There was a fair amount of public support for the arts also, and lots of college scholarships were awarded on the basis of written essays or short stories. Amateur theater was common in many places, too.P.J. Post said:...If creatives continue to be judged by their revenue streams, and if there's no financial stature associated with Art, where is the rationale to pursue the work?
Well, as I say, in this country there's certainly no lack of live music- classical, rock, or jazz. I don't think it's dying by any means. And I haven't noticed any lack of young people wanting to become musicians. I do think the US and Britain have let everything become too commoditized. Life is so uncertain and stressful for a lot of people that they just want to collapse at the end of the day and take their minds off everything. I'm hopeful about the up and coming generation, though. They seem to me to want something more from life- and to be quite intelligent and resourceful about getting it.P.J. Post said:I'd argue that the majority of the mainstream music industry has already fallen off this cliff. And, for the most part, everyone seems to be pretty much fine with it. It's like listening to music as mp3s through ear buds. Have you ever heard a cello live? I'd ask if that experience matters anymore, but the answer is clearly no, at least to most consumers. Reproducing music, like any natural sound reproduction, requires large-ish speakers moving lots of air. Hi-fidelity is yet another casualty from the onslaught of convenient tech. Younger generations (and increasingly, the older ones, too), seem to be completely content with the utter lack of depth and nuance inherent in plasticized reproductions.
I don't know. There have been times in my life when things were rough and all I wanted to do was sit and stare at the TV soaps or read a formulaic piece of fiction. Then, when things were better and I had time and emotional energy for thinking more deeply about things I read literature and poetry, watched classic and 'art' films and went to more concerts. I'm not sure it's any different for most people today. As for writing, I was raised to believe you couldn't make a living writing fiction and the examples I saw pretty much confirmed that. So the question of whether I could make money as a writer never bothered me a lot. I've always wanted to write what I want to write and I'm supremely grateful that the technology has come around to letting me do that without going broke. So on the whole I'd say- some things are worse than they were. Some things are better. As always.P.J. Post said:So the question is: do you think novels are likely to follow these trends, or have they already? If so, is it because readers don't have the time to invest? Or is it because the authors don't have the time to invest?
Or am I tilting at windmills?
While I sympathize with your judgement on Hollywood, I think its decline is tied to the possibilities opened up by technology and new media. Hollywood films are more expensive to make, but, paradoxically, high-quality independent movies have never been cheaper to make or easier to fund. The same goes for self-publishing: Reducing the costs of publishing has removed the barriers to the new and innovative. Moreover, the increased take-home allows writers to make money from stories that have small audiences. All this makes me largely indifferent to the fate of Hollywood and more optimistic than pessimistic about the future.P.J. Post said:As a lover of all things story, I'm curious what you think about the creative direction of publishing - from a writer's perspective.
Or am I tilting at windmills?
He said 90% of everything is [crap]. Looks like you need to trash another 20% of your collection.Skip Knox said:Maybe Sturgeon's Law will help: seventy percent of everything is crap.
Well, attributing bad motives to a poster stirs up crap 90% of the time. That's Dean's law.Amanda M. Lee said:I think someone is bored and looking to stir up a fight.
It's not that disagree with much of what you said (and it was interesting too), but I disagree with the reason you provided for it. Commodification is a minor effect that has been turned into the all-encompassing cause. Take music. The technology that allowed us to record and distribute music cheaply caused an enormous change in how we listen and what we listen to. This is when musicians went from living in a bell-curve world to living in the world of winner-take-all power curves. DJs replaced bands, especially local ones; radios replaced music halls. Patrons no longer picked up the slack outside classical music circles.Sarah Shaw said:I'm not sure that there's ever been a lot of financial stature associated with Art of any kind- it's just that making money didn't used to be the sole criteria by which people judged whether something was worth pursuing or not. In the 18th and 19th centuries....
My son is a professional classical musician. This *still* gets quoted a lot. Usually followed by laughter.Lorri Moulton said:My grandmother was a singer and musician for years (mainly classical music) and she loved this scene. Everyone is a critic!
If you hadn't mentioned the 'NINETY' percent, I would have.KelliWolfe said:NINETY percent.
There are plenty of good movies and good books getting made, despite the usual dreck. A whole lot of them in both industries are by indies. Same as it ever was.