Art for art’s sake?

I belong to a LinkedIn list for art discussion and thought this comment in response to pricing abstract art was thought-provoking:

Melanie Rae Zero • And Mike, if you’re making art for solely for sale, that would be decoration and ornamentation. That’s not art at all. You need to have an idea and e conveying a message. Otherwise, it’s just art for the sake of art. Art for the sake of art is nothing at all, it begs the question. Pointless. Find some value in your life and work from that, otherwise you’re working from the point of view that you’re life is not valuable at all. If you’re life’s not valuable, what’s the point of painting?

I don’t know Melanie Rae Zero, but she has – to say the least – an interesting website:

It all seems to go back to the discussion we had at the Spirit Doll workshop – is there Intention behind the creation? Is a Spirit Doll or Spirit Box just an ornament or is it art? Or something else? Hmmmmmmmm . . .

Spirit Box - just an ornament?

Spirit Box – just an ornament?

PS Spirit Box workshop on the 21st!

4 thoughts on “Art for art’s sake?

  1. And does it matter what art is as long as it satisfies the artist who made it? If it is for sale it will satisfy the intent and longing of the buyer. If it is a piece of art such as a Spirit Doll or Spirit Box all it has to do is satisfy the person who made it.

    • I totally agree, Pat – it’s amazing how we seem to know instinctively when a piece of art “belongs” to us, whether we create it or acquire it –

  2. His claim that art for the sake of art (and the artist) is painful to read. Art has value in and of itself, as it is the expression of a unique human being at a specific time and place and spiritual state of mind.

  3. For the most part I agree that if your only goal is selling and you become mechanical with “what works” your art will eventually loose ‘soul’. If you really love what you are doing though, even though your goal is to make an income, your spirit will come through and all the things you relate to as materials and ideas will contain parts of who you are. Once you get stuck on a ‘recipe’. your work starts to loose this.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.