Ok Ive known this has gone on for a long time but in the last 8 or so years I’ve come across a lot of businessmen posing as artists. Some have a bit of talent or do create something, but they have money and use that to buy legitimacy, I guess you would say. They buy their way into large galleries or have amazing high end marketing setups. They are free to do this, but it just seems odd and raises so many questions for me.
Just because you can afford to put yourself in the mainstrem eye and say this is art peope automatically assume they are legit established artists and accept it enjoy it and start throwing money.
Does this make it harder for artists who take years and joy perfecting their craft not doing it for the money, but for a living and because this is just who they are? Is the actions of these salesmen harmful to the lively hood of true skilled artists?
I had a man in college try to sell me on this lifestyle. He told me that you just have to start making large scale items and price high. Find something you can do easily and largely so you can mass produces large scale “art” the bigger the better this is what rich people want. He would tell me how he would make giant collages of cheap junk and price it ridiculously high and wealthy people would come into the gallery and buy pieces of art based on the price being high not even the quality of work. It still baffles me why you would want to do that on either end.
When I was younger and saw someone “make it” I assumed it was from years of perfecting their craft and gathering a following and it just gets to a point where everyone knows and respects your work and that is just how “mainstream” happens. I never realized that some of these people just pop up with a great marketing idea or sales pitch. They are great salesman and maybe that is an art form in itself but when art and business blur it just doesnt feel right. It bears many questions.
Andy Warhol comes to mind as well as Kim Kardashian. A lot of reality TV stars are a great example. They are on TV so they must have a legitimate talent or reason for being there….right?