Return to Thinking about art

We're already well into the new year and I've yet to complete a new painting. This is very frustrating to me because if I had my druthers, I'd be painting full time. Unfortunately, life sometimes dictates to us what our druthers shall be. We all must make a living and I make mine through commercial art and cartooning. 


Since I no longer have gallery representation, selling fine art has become a more difficult task. Sure, I have an online gallery, but it's not the same. My work looks better in person. I had to leave the gallery due to my controversial cartoons, but it's tough to get into another gallery around here because most of them offer the same old tired realistic landscapes and repetitive western art. Why? Because it sells. Tourists want to buy comfortable souvenirs. They buy kitsch.


But I digress. To get into a gallery, one must have a larger body of work than what I have. I'll be working on that. Time will have to be made. I'm convinced what I'm doing is good stuff--after all, I've been parsing visuals for over 40 years. I know what's good and not so good. My work is good. No brag, just fact. It can also sell--I proved that when I was in a gallery for about a year. 


One of my buyers sent me an email. They expressed the hope that I will 'become famous.' This is encouraging, but one should not buy art in the hopes the artist will become famous, thus increasing the value of the work. It should be similar to buying a pet. One doesn't spend a lot of money on a pet as an investment. Rather, they enjoy having that pet around for its own sake. It should be the same with art.


That said, if value can be created out of thin air by means of crypto currency, then art should also have intrinsic value in and of itself. If the work is original and one of a kind, then it has intrinsic monetary merit already built into it. 


Thanks to anyone who has read this and stay tuned for more paintings!


--Ben Garrison