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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Georgia O'Keefe

"It is very hard work to turn out anything that looks like a good painting."

American Artist
1887 - 1986

What is quality?  Or beauty?  Or greatness?  Most of us make judgements about what art we like and what art we hate.  The younger generation rejects the elders.  And the elders look down their noses at the young.  What is popular today may be forgotten tomorrow.  What is rejected today may inspire others tomorrow.  Beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder, but often we don't act that way.  Each of us thinks we know what is good, what is great and what is best, but it is only an opinion.  How can one judge if a work of art is great?  What makes a work of art great?  The fact that it is still in museums 200 or 300 years after it was created?  

Let's turn this question around.  What makes a work of art a failure?  How do you know when something fails — when something is no good?  Do you destroy your work because you feel it is no good.  Do you paint over your paintings?  Do you burn your manuscripts?  (I don't throw away anything I create even if I feel it is no good.) Why do people criticize a work of art?  What does the criticism say about the critic?  Who makes the critic the authority?  Can we trust that the critic is correct?  Do critics make mistakes?  I believe critics often make mistakes.  History proves them wrong.  Have faith in your work.  Don't accept the criticism of others.  They are human and often make mistakes.

Enjoy some of O'Keefe's paintings and become inspired.