See Vox Pop for a compilation of replies.
Does etiquette require you to stop and listen?
We give you the option.
You can listen and move.
But confronted with visual art one must pause, imbibe,
ponder, reflect and weigh up whether the object before you is wasting your
time or giving rise to inspiration and wholeworldiness. Or maybe I've been
subjected to too many dodgy pieces of 'art'.
Perhaps music is instinctively categorised.
We know most music in public thoroughfares is definitely
Quite who callously decides that a Bontempi organ-led
bossa nova permed hair nylon shirt white sliced bread smooch is just what
a shopping mall at 9am needs belongs in Hell.
Unfortunately we are standing in it.
As ludicrous as that same shopping mall pasting up a continuous
line of 6' x 4' over inked postcard reproductions of an acknowledged 'great
work'. Both scenarios suggest a Valley of Death from which we can walk
But what's this outside?
A virtuoso one handed violinist to your left.
Punch him out.
And what's this to your right?
An eight foot lump of granite kissed by shotgun
pellets and skewered with an RSJ.
Art into the community?
The affrontory of it all.
Suddenly, by chance, the creator of this piece materialises
at my side. There is no reason for obvious comment, for criticism invites
accusations of ignorance. But there is always the element of 'Why?'
Meanwhile the one handed virtuoso continues to scrape
laterally and optimistically in the gutter. No resentment from him. Why?
Because he knows he hasn't plonked an eight foot lump of granite
in your path. He also knows his art is invisible.
The composer writes a score.
It exists for those who wish to bring it to life.
The artist paints a picture.
It exists for those who come into contact with it to
say 'somebody painted that.....'.
Visual art is too restricting. It is not malleable.
It is not 'passing the ball.'
You know - community spirit, co-operation, sharing...
OK, sharing the inner turmoil or perception of the creative
mind. How brave, to expose such rarely glimpsed treasure! But is it not
blatant showing off with no allowance for retribution or addendum?
So much contemporary art these days begs the question as to what happened
to craftsmanship and why competence is the rationale.
Perhaps the same question must be directed at 'western
art music' - as contemporary classical music is now described.
Let us once more literally confront both items.
To the left - a painting mounted in a simple wooden frame.
To the right - a 'rack mount all you ever need state
of the art transistorised midi hi-fi DCC Mini-Disc CD available from your
nearest stockist if offered cheaper elsewhere we'll refund the difference.
Includes super woofer bass, ten channel graphic AND......a free plug'.
So. At first glance the art of the musician is contained
on a little bit of plastic within a plethora of consumer nonsense. Hiding,
The painting, on the other hand, is quite nude by comparison.
There you have it, the visualists cry! We confront. We are open, Direct.
The purity is apparent. This is unique - a one off.
The battle commences.
Out of the speaker pours an archetypal modern 'serious'
Oh no - here comes the doubt.
To our left the picture begs analysis.
1) smash the equipment to buggery. There's plenty
more on the production line. Smashing one employs one to build another.
2) simply turn the volume down.
As for the painting.......
I can't smash it up - it's a 'work of art'.
WELL IF IT'S THAT FUCKING IRREPLACABLE THE ARTIST SHOULD
BLOODY WELL KEEP IT SAFE AT HOME.
I'm sorry, but sound, like God, is invisible.
The visual artist can make no more than icons.
And we have the last laugh......
As you turn from the visual object it leaves your line
As you walk away from a sound source it lingers in the
air - haunting you till out of earshot.
I never had a painting follow me out of a room.