Why We Make Art

Why do we make art? Is Art still relevant?

Whether you believe it or not, we are all expressive beings who find ways to express our deepest feelings, thoughts, and ideas of everything and nothing through media such as poetry, painting, photography, pottery, music, diary entry, modern blog, and so much more. And we've been doing this since the dawn of time, Lascaux cave painting or Venus of Willendorf figurine anyone? 

Lascaux Cave Painting, France, Google Search

Venus of Willendorf in 3 Angles, Google Search
But why do we truly make art, I think writer Jeremy Adam Smith said it best in below article Why We Make Art published on Greater Good Berkeley site, where he interviewed several artists for their opinions on the matter: 

For some it's an intrinsic process, for others making art is a purposeful choice. Despite all the reasons as to why we make art, is art still relevant? You bet it is! In fact it is becoming increasingly important with the advance of technology such as instagram, photoshop, paint bucket, illustrator, and the list goes into infinity. 

With a click of a button, we filter what we see, we crop what we want, and we edit elements into a cohesive composition of colors, objects, and ultimately a subjective statement that we "share" with the rest of the world. 

Charlie Brown, Wallpaper Google Search
Did I just said "sharing?" Yes, once upon a time we used to have to attend galleries and museums to see art works that convey the thoughts, emotions, and every other expressions of the artists. Not any more, especially when "like it," "follow it," "hash tag it" and "circle it" are increasingly blurring the line of the definition of what is "art," taking away the prestige of curatorial authority once enjoyed by art critics and curators. 

APP Buttons, Google Search
Ask any one of your young friends, do they still use the word "Curated?" I bet the choice word since 2007 is "Shared." Do young and aspiring artists still take their portfolio to a gallery hoping for presentation, or do they instead rush to sign up with Instagram or Pinterest?

With these accounts comes the power of apps, and with apps comes the power of accessibility. And with accessibility art is no longer hiding in a gallery, but within the reach of your cellphone. Subsequently, the process of becoming an artist is also shorten and compacted to couple clicks of a button. And the exhibition aspect has been sped up to the point that left many traditional artists bewildered. 

In case you were born after 1995, it used to be that an artist would spend years in his or her own time to perfect his or her techniques before ever scoring any formal presentation from the gallery and show his or her works.

Source picture from Atlantic Center For The Arts
This whole process may be as long as a whole life time, involving tons and tons of rejections from fellowship, residency, gallery, curator, and art critique before you would even be considered as "made it". But every rejection is another way for artists to hone their skills and internalize the experience into their art works, as compare to amateur sketches generating thousands of "like" without merit, but plenty of popularity on social media sphere. 

Below is the article Why Instagram Sucks by Ryan Pinkard of www.elephantjournal.com
Flickr: rondostar
With all that being said, art is still relevant and it saturates our lives through all the apps that we play with. Good or bad, professional or amateur; the only difference is we are no longer being told what is art and what not by an institutional authority. Instead ,we make up our own minds and we "like" and "follow" and "repin" what we considered as art, and share it with our own world of 3 F's: friends, families, and fans. 

This is why I think the "block" button is the best creation in the world. 


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