Art Rant

Artists don't get to decide

They even know what this, that or the other symbol, gesture, shade, shape or shadow, tension among parts, spatial relationship or texture meant to them, then, but only someone viewing it gets to decide what it's really about.

Someimes those viewers gang up on or over other viewers — like established critics or historians or friends or enemies of the artists inquestion. Then we are all led like lemmings, flopping from one painting to the next at a museum as the experts pratle in our ears through headphones and coiled wires fromtape plaayers, telling us their versions of the real skinny on what this artist is telling us in this splatter or that contras or theother color.

Likewise, as beauty is reported to lie in the eye of the beholder, so, too, is the dtermination of the art status of that work.

But is it art? If I say it is, it is art to me. If she says it is art, it is to her. You may disagree. And the squackers may lie to us all in museum rentatape earphones and lecutre halls and art and history books. But we get to decide all by ourselves.


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