Thought on "CUNTemporary art" (as a friend put it - not my term):
We all know this bullshit. Some guy paints a canvass solid blue all in one color and calls it "art", and it sells for a million dollars. I hate that as much as the next person.
But I like the concept. I remember one social experiment where someone intentionally left a bottle of water on the floor of an art gallery, and people stopped to contemplate it.
That experiment was meant to show how gullible people are, but I think the experiment failed. It showed that people in the right mindset will stop to think. (Mind you, I'm not so gullible that I'd pay 35 million dollars for it, but I thought it was interesting enough that it was ironically art in itself.)
In 1993, my friend's mother wrote a children's opera, "The Pied Piper". Very old story, and aimed at kids, so I won't comment on how "good" it was. But her composition was far and away better and more thought out than a can of blue paint on a piece of fabric. I was actually part of that production. My friend's brother sampled my voice screaming into a microphone and manipulated it, and it became part of the show.
The opera premiered in Tacoma, Washington, and I attended. Afterward, there was a gala at a nearby art gallery. When I walked in, the first thing I noticed was a huge cluster of yellow balloons hanging festively from the high ceiling, much like a bunch of grapes, but transparent and yellow. It was impressive.
There was artwork on the walls, but I really didn't care. I was a little hungry, so I darted upstairs to the refreshments. When I got there, I noticed two empty bowls on a table next to where the hors d'oeuvres were. I had hoped they would soon be filled with chips (or crisps, for my British folks). They were rather ornate glass bowls, but giving the setting, they didn't seem out of place. As I was filling my plate, I accidentally bumped unto that little table. It wobbled, and the two glass bowls kind of counter-balanced. I grabbed one, and another patron grabbed the other. We moved the "table" (which was suddenly dawning on me was not a table, but a pedestal) closer to the wall, so nobody else would bump into it. Those two bowls were part of the exhibit. I was standing in the middle of a Dale Chihuly exhibit. Those "balloons" were made of glass. That was also one of his works.
The next day, president George H.W. Bush (yeah I'm that old) gave a speech in Seattle. The morning after that, a picture appeared on the front page of the newspaper (yeah, I'm that old). I was impressed that the picture was in color (yeah, I'm that old). The picture was of the president flanked by two pieces of art by a local artist. Those two works were the exact two that I had almost destroyed the night before.
So . . . you know how in the movies when someone travels through time they have to grab a newspaper to see what the day is? When I saw those two "bowls", I realized that I might have altered history.
. . . And I didn't recognize it as art at the time. My point is that it's always the mindset.