E-shaun begins by asking.......
>An even deeper question
>(and one which I have never been able to answer for myself) is *why* an
>artist creates in the first place.
>>It is like this creative intelligence growing in the brain that sends
signals through the capillaries to the intricate network of the body
-- from the esophagus down through to the "gut" and causing a wonderful ache, a anxiously awaited joy to express! Well put, indeed. And to me also almost an erotic satisfaction, a euphoria that occurs when I am in that state, sometimes to the point where I have to almost stop working out of overwhelm. I believe other arts besides 'art' probably cause that kind of euphoria, i have heard it expressed by mathematicians and musicans as well.
> Is it to prove one's ability?
>> Natasha: >>If I produce a painting -- it is to not to establish to anyone else my own authenticity or validity. My work speaks for itself and the emotion of expression has its own worth. For this Muse, it is different, I *definetely* paint and create to prove myself. Not that I need the approval of *all* people, but if everyone hated my work I would be very crushed. I consider myself a very good artist, but I like to be seen, heard and liked. I need it to survive, almost as much as the money I make from it. It is a very important part of my art - validation. I have learned this about myself and I therefore put my work in front of the public as much as possible. Which is very hard to do for me. Since it matters so very much.... sigh....
> If so,
>why is it necessary to attain popular approval for one's own creations?
Natasha: >>It isn't necessary. It is business. I'm not interested in popular approval as much as I am interested in producing work that is valuable and having my business successful. To questions the necessity of getting approval sure sounds like a very insecure person. Not good for creating or expression. Damn right, Natasha, and a lot of people think artists don't really "work". I am always hearing "oh how fun that must be" - fun... hah!!! Well, shee-it, it is none other than, bone-crushing, finger-numbing, back-breaking, muscle-building hard-ass physical labor. And if I don't recieve renumerative compensation of the highest order, I'd be nuts to do it for a living , given the kind of stigmas attached.
>Why does an artist feel the need to either
>conform to or react against popular culture?
Natasha: >>I suppose the same reason anyone would conforms or reacts? It is not a prescribed character trait of us artists -:) Who are you to say what we feel a need to do? I paint pretty things, that have nothing to do with pop culture, then I blatantly offend stutus quo in the next breath. I would sugeest that you re-examine the above statement for bias. What I will say is that a lot of artists make their living by tuning in to what is known as the "Zeitgeist (SP?)" of a culture ( Pulp Fiction good example) and massaging it to make a statement. That 's what it takes to make a buck....
>And again, what *is* the
>purpose of art?
Natasha: Imagine a world without it? Can we get through a day without interfacing with art? Yeah , you might as well ask, what is the purpose of creation, or what is the purpose of expression? The purpose of art - of any discipline. What kind of art? Of course I assume you mean visual art: if so are you talking about images? Sculpture? Graphic Art? Animation? Tattoos? How about Pageantry? Performance? Film? Net.art? Music? Storytelling? Design? Decoration? Clowning? Choreography? Lighting? Theater? Healing? Journalism? ...ad infinitum. What a general question.. be more specific. Even popular art is so diverse!!! The purpose of "cloisonee ceramics" is very differnent than the purpose of "Body piercing". Both are art. ( or, arguably, neither)
>So when talking
>about popular art, is there a lowest common denominator of sorts to
>determine what people will like or want to see?
Natasha: >> I'm not sure we can group civilization together so tightly by giving a one-liner sound bite to "art for civilization's sake." Enuff said. Except, I would add, where is this question coming from, and why do you ask it. And what -- to you -- is lowest denominator popular art? hmm.... for me I woudl say.... Beany Babies? (snip -- Natasha's good answer about storytelling)
>Art and aesthetics and our senses - seeing, hearing, tasting, touching smelling, loving are such a sensorial experience. Let them speak to us and dance with us! OH! Here comes a gllimmer of light across my studio wall. Delightful play of elements. And in well made and well recieved creative '"arts" - you may find that an outlet for finely tuned emotion is expressed.. and felt and heard and played with such a love of life that it might even touch you somewher in your core essence awake with joy or tears..... And again not to hammer in a point, it is a trained ear that hears the subtley of beats and the scientific instrument that measures the harmonics... and both are important to understanding the beast... and maybe a glass of wine will help too... ; ) >>