Art As A Self Discipline

“If art is about self, the widely accepted corollary is that making art is about self-expression. And it is – but that is not necessarily all it is. What gets lost in that interpretation is an older sense that art is something you do out in the world, or something you do about the world, or even something you do for the world. The need to make art may not stem solely from the need to express who you are, but from a need to complete a relationship with something outside yourself. As a maker of art you are custodian of issues larger than self.”

David Bayles and Ted Orland, Art and Fear

3 thoughts on “Art As A Self Discipline

  1. Yayay, that’s a brilliant quote. The idea is one well worth promoting, I hope you have more luck with it than I did. Perhaps your more genteel manner will help. All I got was, ” Don’t tell us what to do, you arrogant bastard.” Mainly because this idea leads directly to, not every one is an artist, being an artist is applying a learned set of skills (craft) to an idea not just splatting selfportraits on a page. Of course that’s when you start to upset people.

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  2. This quote lead me to think that art might have little to do with one’s self or one’s skill level or one’s motivation. It could be something one is drive to, mandated to by something else. Thus, all the talk of “good” or “bad” art, “skilled” or “unskilled” work, all this could be put into question. As art could be something entirely out of our hands.

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