Artist-Writers Part I
As noted in my review of the
7th Annual National Self-Portrait Exhibition
at the Zhao B. Art Center in Chicago,
the above painting caught my eye.
Because even though it's a self portrait,
it steps back to be about self regard in general,
a much more frightening psychological subject
and suitable for Classical poetry
The artist was Brian Curtis who is
something of a classicist.
Perhaps if all of the other 149 artists in the self-portrait show
were as well,
he would not have been so remarkable.
But indeed, he was the only one offering gem-like quality and wry wit
instead of crude self expression and a clownish sense of humor.
As a professor,
he also goes around
to academic conferences
where he delivers papers on
* "De-nuding the curriculum"
* "why n'art aint art"
* "a generation without studio training"
* "an ecosystem of interruption technologies:
the internet as a distraction, numbing, mind-altering substance"
* "Duchamps legacy"
.... and, of course :
* "A Voice Crying in the Wilderness"
where he tells us that:
I am an academic-leaning artist who was educated by modernists and who now finds himself teaching in a world that privileges contemporary anti-art practice. The pedagogical habitat that once supported the goal of fostering visual sensitivity, talent, craftsmanship, and creativity is fading rapidly from college level art school programs. This goal is being displaced - and increasingly replaced - by the de-skilling and dematerializing promotion of something called artist's attitude.
Truly a scholar
worthy to share the purple mushrooms
of those who live on Mount Shang.