Blog: The Identifying Key in Art

Christine Alfery

Posted on November 30 2017

Blog: The Identifying Key in Art

“It’s a Small World” 64×64 – Watercolor on canvas.

So how can one find “self” express “self” in their work? The criteria haven’t changed, uniqueness, originality, independence, freedom. What has changed is how those ideas are currently controlled or governed. To pursue self in art one must treat others as individuals, respect the uniqueness of their work, and not be forced to follow in the footsteps of those who want to govern how art and the self in art is understood and is to be governed.

To find self in art – one needs a purpose and needs to produce in their work this purpose. I find I ask myself these questions as I judge a work of art: does this work have some sort of unique visual language or does it conform to already established languages that have lost their genuineness? If the visual language is recording history, is recording a political moment then it is not self or art. On the other hand, if the recording of history, the recording of a political moment is stylized into an artists own language then it is self and art?

An artist’s own language reflects the artists own self and the artists own truth. And this gives rise to the truth in the self and in the art work and makes it genuine. I know I love cookies, this is a truth. I know I don’t love all cookies, yet another truth. Does my desire for a cookie make it a truth? No it is just a desire. Does my desire for art to reflect an originality, an independence, a uniqueness, a freshness, a originality make that a truth in art? Yes and no.

If one understands that this can change as it did for the Abstract Expressionists in the 60’s then yes it can be a truth. The key is to understand how these notions are controlled and governed. The key is to know the power within each concept and not to release that power to another. The key also is not to be governed by the collective, unless …… one wants to be one of the many.

The key is to objectively, judge, determine the notions of: originality, independence and uniqueness. This key can be determined independently and collectively through what we know, our knowledge, and how we have come to know it and call it a truth. Then one can know self and art.

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