Tuesday, March 17, 2009

OPINION: Are non-traditional venues a help or hindrance to the fine arts?

This is in response to a question submitted by Andrew Kline and posted on March 17, 2009. Further responses will be posted as they are received.

by Caroline Tavelli-Abar

Thank you for posting!!

“The role that “fine art“ plays in our culture is to expand our way of seeing and understanding the world around us. Artists through their study and perseverance develop a sensitivity and insight to our world”
...Yes, I find this to be true for myself as well

“that the layman does not have."
...There is a wonderful honesty in the vision of a person not used to looking at art that can help artists of any caliber further understand the world around them, and sometimes even clear up blind spots we all have.

“The work they produce deserves more care and reverence than the work of the part-time artists."
...Any art work deserves care and reverence, for some art work is seed for future growth, and just as enlightenment can be reached in the blink of an eye or never despite years of study, so can it be for the artist.

“Displaying “fine art” in nontraditional venues trivializes and demeans it.”
...Another way of looking at this could be that to bring 'fine art' into
common places can bring a new awareness to the people who live, work, inhabit, and use our common places, and inspire change. The Rochester Vermont Post Office 05767 for example has put on one show a month since December and is still looking for artists to share their vision - and the sheer delight those shows have brought deserves our reverence, just as the work does. They were not perfect and yet they filled an institutional space with a glimpse of imagination, and the art transformed the space, not by
trivializing the space but by bringing a glimmer of understanding into the void. Art and understanding like a weed creeping up everywhere no longer contained might be in need of curators!

“By its very nature it is not meant to be seen as commonplace. To experience
the work in its fullest it needs to be shown in a place that has been set aside solely for that purpose.”
...Sometimes to see oneself in the best possible light, with the right dress, hair and makeup, can inspire others to dream of glamour. However, a gilded cage may not always be the best place for our wild and vibrant nature.

Above right: Caroline Tavelli-Abar's painting The Pink House, 2008, 22 1/2 x 30", mixed media (silver leaf, ink wash, charcoal), from a private collection, exhibited in the Rochester Post Office