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Posts Tagged: art

The Cliché of Leadership

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Think about it. A real leader is somebody who, because of his own particular power and charisma and example, is able to inspire people, with ‘inspire’ being used here in a serious and non-cliché way. A real leader can somehow get us to do certain things that deep down we think are good and want to be able to do but usually can’t get ourselves to do on our own.

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Can We Separate The Art From The Artist?

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“The problem with art is, because we love it so much, we put the artists who created it on pedestals and we believe they cannot fail because, in some corner of our mind, we’ve formed a relationship with them and their product, and for us to discover them as imperfect shatters the illusion: we have made a god in our mind where there is only a human, as flawed and imperfect as ourselves.

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George Saunders,Timebends, and What Art Is Supposed to Do

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There is a great interview over at BuzzFeed Books with George Saunders in which he discusses Arthur Miller’s Timebends and what he believes the purpose of art is.

I also found myself really excited by Miller’s basic assumptions about art: It’s important, it is supposed to change us, it’s not supposed to be trivial or merely clever, it’s one human being trying to urgently communicate with another.

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The Value of Art

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The importance of art to society is unquestionable, even more so to fellow artists but sometimes the questions is raised, What is art for?

“We value historical information of this kind for various reasons: because we want to understand more about our ancestors and how they lived and because we hope to gain insight from these distant people and cultures.

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Rockwell and the Law of Opposites

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In the New Yorker, Lee Siegel sheds light on the oft-seen contradiction between artists and their art in her review of Deborah Solomon’s biography “American Mirror: The Life and Art of Norman Rockwell.”

In contrast to his idealized paintings of happy hetero Americans, Rockwell is described as a depressed, compulsively obsessive, and “a repressed homosexual.”

You might call this condition of artistic creation the law of opposites, which can be a displacement of identity, as in the case of the gay composers and actors of yesteryear, or a transmutation of identity.

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Lou Reed’s Discobiography

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This week in The New Yorker, Nick Flynn writes a poem about Lou Reed. There have also been some other great articles about Lou Reed.

“Discobiography” might sound like the title of a cheesy 70s memoir, but according to Erich Kuersten it’s the perfect name for the genre in which Lou Reed’s Great American Novel resides.

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Is there really such a thing as an overshare?

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Have you ever heard of an overshare? Of course you have. Did you know there is such a thing as successfully oversharing? Rumpus contributor and former editor Seth Fischer lets us know the art of the overshare at Jaded Ibis‘ literary blog BLEED:

“And this is the real trick of successfully oversharing: You have to be able to embody your less than perfect emotional states, but you have to be able to do that with clarity, precision, and self-awareness.

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Modern Art in Nazi Germany

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This BBC story goes into fascinating detail about the way the degenerate art was displayed alongside insulting graffiti, and, of course, what role Hitler’s youthful art education played in all this. (Via.)

In 1937, the Nazi regime staged two simultaneous art exhibitions, one with art they supported (“statuesque blonde nudes along with idealized soldiers and landscapes”) and one with “degenerate” art (“modern, abstract, non-representational”) that they felt represented a threat to the German state.

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The New York Comics & Picture-Story Symposium: David Lefkowitz

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The New York Comics & Picture-Story Symposium is a weekly forum for discussing the tradition and future of text/image work. Open to the public, it meets Monday nights at 7-9pm EST in New York City. Presentations vary weekly and include everything from historical topics and technical demonstrations to creators presenting their work.

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“All Your Life is a Work of Art”

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The Atlantic has been hosting a series called “By Heart,” where authors discuss their favorite quotes in literature.

Edwidge Dandicat talks about her immigration experience and chooses a passage from a novel by Patricia Engels, which articulates that “trying to start a life in a strange land is an artistic feat of the highest order, one that ranks with (or perhaps above) our greatest cultural achievements.”

Dandicat says, “This brings art into the realm of what ordinary people do to in order to survive.

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New Kind of Art: A @horse_ebooks Roundup

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For the past few years, the Twitter account @horse_ebooks has delighted hundreds of thousands of followers with algorithmically generated excerpts of found text like “Everything happens so much,” “Crying is great exercise,” and “Unfortunately, as you probably already know, people.”

Or so everyone thought.

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Art and Money and Muppets

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Because it taught children across the country, Henson became a household name, and through Sesame Street toys, Henson became a millionaire….However, licensing toys, to Henson, felt like selling out.

The cage-match-to-the-death between art and business can be brutal, but Muppet-master Jim Henson seemed to broker a level of peace between the two.

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Artist Collaborates With 4-Year-Old on Weird, Wonderful Drawings

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Much like when our beloved illustrator Jason Novak collaborated with his one-and-a-half-year-old daughter to draw all 43 US presidents, artist Mica Angela Hendricks shared her sketchpad with her four-year-old:

“I was going to draw a body on this lady’s face,” I said.  “Well, I will do it,” she said very focused, and grabbed the pen.

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From Your Mother

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Sylvia Plath is known as a writer and a poet, but she almost became a visual artist instead. Plath’s daughter, Frieda Hughes, who is also a painter and a poet, has created a book out of more than forty of her mother’s drawings.

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