Blog: Why Do Artists Fail?

Christine Alfery

Posted on September 19 2018

Blog: Why Do Artists Fail?

 Featured image: Dragonflies Hope

Is the failure of some artists essential to the success of a few? Is the failure of some artists due to their inability to set a goal and then achieve it? OR Is the failure of some artists due to their inability to recognize what they are capable of achieving and instead living on wishing thoughts and hopeful dreams? Is the failure of some artists do to their inability to link themselves to power and money, such as Wall Street traders, venture capitalists, merchants, the state, the church, the gallery? Is it that some artists are better at playing the game than other artists are? Are these the questions we really want to ask when creating a visual objects?

Perhaps instead we should ask is the failure of an artist is related to the simple fact that not all who call themselves artists are artists? Perhaps the notion of art and artists needs to be more select – and exceptional? Perhaps those who succeed do not owe their success to a few, but instead owe their success to their work and the acceptance of the concept that to be an artist and to create art is indeed something exceptional and not all who create visual objects are exceptional. Not all who play in the art arena, in the game so to speak, deserve a trophy, just the exceptional few do. Why? because they are exceptional. Not because they have participated in an event.

What makes them exceptional? They themselves do.

Unfortunately exceptionalism is no longer the case. In art article after art article I read about how important the context of the art object is and should be when artists are creating and making art. Art is not context, if art is context then it is history and those who create a visual work of art are visual art historians not artists. Art is concept. It is the birth of an idea, and then the follow through to make that idea/concept visible. Art is not a social construct – what art is cannot be determined by some ethical, moral social constraint and how it is visualized. The power of what art is cannot be reduced to a social construct be it the power of money or the power of the elite, or the power of educational teachings. Rather what art is should be placed in the ever changing, expansive, creative arena of the conceptual aesthetic.

The failures of all artists who fail is the fact that they haven’t grasped that concept and expect more from the work that they produce, that is they expect money and fame. The whole structure of the concept of art has been turned upside down; the structure of what is art has shifted from a concept of aesthetic creations to a context of social justice and fairness. If all art is fair then there is no art only fairness.

I for one love living and creating with wishful thinking and hopeful dreams of what will I find, of discovery and exploration and exposing those discoveries visually. Not repeating what others have done and not reinforcing their social, political agenda visually.

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