A recent post on Facebook, by my friend Orlando Perez, made me think about Art, Artist, and Selling what we do. First and foremost, I am an Artist. My mediums are oil paint, sometimes acrylics. Also charcoal and graphite. Another medium is through my photography, and all the tools, equipment, and technology that encompases today.
It’s not a hobby, and it is more than a job. It is a Passion. I must do it, I have no control over it. It is the Id, of who I am. And Yet, I sell what is most precious to me. Certainly not my body. I wish 🙂 I sell what evolves from the deepest I Am place within.
Thus I am Prostituting myself. I am and I acknowledge it.
The purest form of ART, is that Artist who pursues his endeavors without regard to what others, especially the public, think or feel about his work . Sadly, to live, most Artist must sell, in order to pursure what drives them. Thus strengthing the acknowledgement of Prostitution. Those Artist who make it to the top, so to speak, by attaining a following, a Patron, or others who believe in their work, and support them financially, are generally disdained by fellow Artist. More so in the Fine Arts, than commercial work such as photography. But there is jealousy and politics at all levels.
Fine Artist almost see financial success of others as selling out or not truly being Fine Art. And there are plenty of cases to be made for that (such as the artist Kincaid). Sadly more, is the fact that financial success is relied upon, and yet dependent oft times on those who are not artist, and can not make art. Thus the judge becomes someone with no expertise about what he judges.
One of the great Patrons of the Arts in Los Angeles, is Billionaire Eli Broad. Mr. Broad asserted the importance of Artist, in conjunction with Business, he said, ‘because Artist see the world differently’. And that is the essence of it. WE, Artist, see the world differently. My Passion for my Art has never been so strong. I seek to make a social statement, with my art. Be it Photographically testifying as to the sexual nature of the human animal. Or esoterrically aluding to the concept of beauty, as seen by humans, with line, and colour, and paint.
I am ok with being a Whore. And I respect Whores a hellofalot more than a lot of businessmen.
PORN. `WHAT IS ART ABOUT’
A friend of mine on Facebook, was recently Banned for three days, for posting unacceptable material (art with nudity). I’ve also been banned in the past. And while I try to observe the requirements of Facebook, I understand the frustrations that artist’s endure.
Unfortunately, its the “term”, the “idea’ of what PORN is, which is impossible to define for everyone ! I suscribe to the concept that I can’t define it, I just know it when I see it. When most people speak of porn, they are speaking of sexual materials, photos, etc. I personally don’t have an issue with Porn of a sexual nature. Yet I know all pics [sexual materials], be it yours, mine, or someone else’s, are not appropriate in every venue. Sure, some of my work, some of anyone’s work, can be described as Porn. So what ? For me the term itself is simply a Judgement. What someone needs or wants to judge, is really their issue. For me personally, I think that the depiction of Violence is the most pornographic damning thing we have in our Western Society. And I think its also pornographic when someone tries to inflict their moral judgement on others. Our Western Culture does not allow someone to mandate our politics or our religion. So why Sex ? Why not, Violence ? We take Cigaretes out of movies, post nutrition information at restaurants, control guns, and traffic laws help protect us. All ways we as a society deem it necessary to help protect the innocent, and the ignorant. YET, why in the hell do we allow the depiiction of rape, murder, and all forms of violence in television, movies, and everywhere we look ? Why is the depiction of violence not Porn ? It is ! To Me !
Like everyone, I have my limits about what , where , when, and how sexual material be disseminated. For me, my Boundary is about Children. Sex must be approached with love and beauty around children. Their impressionable and immature minds and bodies should only be exposed to such things when they are old enough to comprehend. Our society has deemed 18 years old, as the age of legal consent. Rarely I believe are our children unaware of sex till they are 18. So thats probably a bit arcane [and subject for another Blog]. Example. If I’m shown pictures of men sucking each others Cocks, or women fucking dogs, is that Pornographic ? I’d say No. Now I really don’t have an interest is such things. So I would clarify by saying that if these pictures are show me in an art gallery, where I have the option of viewing or not, then I say still, NO, not porn. If they are shown on Facebook, I still say NOT porn. And I’ also would say that the venue is not appropraite. If they are shown to “children”, in any venue, its wrong. Yes, I acknowledge My Judgement.
My children were raised around art. We had nude paintings throughout the house. And of course their mother is European, so there was less hangup about nudity and such. With that, both daughters diverged on different paths. One very modest and conservative, and the other more liberal and open. Neither is right or wrong, or better, or worse. It just is. Everyone has the right to his or her own feelings about nudity and sex. The same for violence. Maybe you enjoy rape, murder, and gore. I do not. For me, thats Porn. Its wrong. It helps manifest anger in our society. For me, that should be the fulcrum by which movies are judged. Not sexual. But Hey, the Pilgrams and Puritans that settled this country, saw to that.
Of course, by my own definition, if I were to impose my beliefs about violence on you, I would be creating my own pornograohy. So I don’t try to. Yet, I still do not enjoy violence and I simply choose not to support it.
I am currently shooting for an upcoming coffee table book, a series of art nudes, ranging from the sublime and beautiful to the erotic and sexual. My Goddess Books will endeavor to portray the Goddess in every woman. In three themes they are: The Agape Goddess, The Pregnant Goddess, and The Goddess in Bliss. The themes were brought about through the Spiritual connection with my wife. Its been a long beautiful journey and strengthened my beliefs about sexuality, love, beauty, spirit. And yet, some will find it pornographic . I’m sure many will consider it pronoraphic. And I’m equally as sure that many will find the beauty in it that I see. I do hope that whatever their reaction, it provokes some emotion around the portrayals depicted. And that it creates conversation. Open, two way Conversation.
Here’s what my friend Nicole West had to say on her Facebook Post: “My art has the power to effect people. That is something every artist strives for. Whether it be joy and elation, awe and inspiration, or anger and disgust. Moving another person with you art is huge. Powerful stuff.”
Art, Beauty, Creativity, Design, and even Business, envelope my world. I’ve been a successful builder and developer for many years. Now, more and more, Art is taking on a powerful place in my daily life. My design work has minifested itself in homes and buildings, fashion, cars, and art. My art now consist of both painting, and photography. My painting is both in oils and acrylics. Subject matter ranging from traditional representational in landscape, figures, and portrait, to impressionistic, En Plein Air, and delving into the abstract. My photography is both commercial, and personal. Including Fashion, Editorial, Event and Advertising. The Personal usually has to do with nude figures and faces of women.
I’m doing research and writing a book about a man and artist whom I loved. His name is Julian Ritter. There is a website I’ve started with some stories about Julian, and photos of some of Julian’s paintings. Also, I am photographing , sometime with my wife Sandy, and for which we are planning to publish a series of hardcover Coffee Table Books we call The Goddess series. There are three themes and will be art nudes and erotic nudes. When published there will be an art gallery exhibition along with performances pertaining to the Goddess theme.
My wife Sandy and I believe in, and follow a Spiritual path, having studied, and practicing, Tantra in our daily lives. Sandy is a amazing Goddess and has truly enabled me to follow my true path. And what this Blog will do, is to allow me to discuss relevant issues pertaining to art, creativity, and Life. My only rule is that respect be shown at all times. Its good to disagree, and it makes the disagreement more of a positive learning opportunity, when its done with respect.
For me, ART, is about all the things mentioned above (ie: creativity, beauty, etc), and it is a very important tool to discuss social ideas. To push boundaries and to open discussion, exclaim perspectives, and delve into the consciousness of what it is to have a human physical experience. First, we must understand that to be an artist, to be creative, is to lose all fear of being wrong.