of the West of England (Bower Ashton) : BA(HONS) Fine Art
I am not content to stay within one medium, discipline, scale, mood or tone. There is no unifying theme to my expression. At the risk of trapping myself into a concrete statement, I would say that every creative venture I begin I attempt to approach
it as if I have never done it before. My aim is to
strip myself of preconception, which comes in many forms. The most insistent of these I find is the Art Market.
The pressures that the Art Market puts upon an artist to find an identifiable ‘style’ are understandable in that they come from the principle of investment; the idea that when someone buys a work of art they are buying a valuable example of the artist’s ‘style’. Although this thinking is understandable, it is in complete contradiction to the artist’s essence:
that of creativity. It is not that investment and creativity cannot coexist, it is that ‘style’ and creativity have a limited partnership at best. What makes the Art Market seem insidious is the relatively recent phenomenon of superstardom in the art world, the practice of speculation on the part of buyers (as though in a Futures Market) and the subsequent feeling on the part of other artists that they too have to ‘make it’. The unfortunate irony for artists is that it is really more of a Pasts Market. The general expectation for young artists is that if they don’t have a ‘signature style’ right out of college then they aren’t succeeding as artists, that they are merely derivative and not truly ‘original’. This belief is misguided and damaging to artistic fluency.
Because, in the desperate rush to get noticed, many young artists forego what most people agree are necessities such as drawing and color theory in exchange for artistic tools (of ambiguous merit at
best) such as shock value and pseudo-intellectualism.
My first reaction has been defiance of this culture of investment and its attendant shortcomings.
However, this has given way to patience. I realize that I am young and that time is the only factor which can truly identify a ‘style’, my ‘style’. For my own part, I can only educate myself in the tools and languages of making art and eschew the temptations of ‘style’ for the more promising potential of ‘variety’.
University of the West of England (Bower Ashton) : BA(HONS) Fine Art