Fine Art Photography - degree/MFA "required"?

Started Sep 16, 2011 | Discussions thread
tex Veteran Member • Posts: 7,178
Re: you should stick to technical matters

bobn2 wrote:

tex wrote:

You are making a big assumption there, which is that I have no exposure to artists and the like.

no, actually i assumed you did have some exposure, otherwise you wouldn't know enough about it to be bothered by it. and this bother continues to be notable. it definitely says more about you than what you are yourself critiquing in a fairly inchoate way.

I think my criticism is coherent - it's a load of w4nk.

i don't see much coherent in such an assertion. just an assertion with no back-up

Note, I am not an artist, I have not been disadvantaged one way or another by the activities of these parasites. So, it probably does say something about me...


i have a few years on you in total experience, in a broader range of settings. and probably a lot more direct exposure to critics, curators, and the like.

Good. You're probably an art critic.

no, an artist

Believe me, art critics contribute nothing apart from pseudo-intellectual w4nk which the artists deride as much as anyone else.

that's a statement so broad brush that it's pretty much worthless. there's great criticism out there---thought provoking and very valuable.

valuable to whom? To those who like a bit of intellectual masturbation, probably. To the artists, not at all.

again, i'm not sure you're really qualified to make such a statement---mainly because it seems your exposure to criticism is only passing. also, to artists.

To the general public, even less.

that's a separate argument altogether. i happen to think that the arts are not for everyone, and the pushing of that idea by altruistic and wooly headed "educators" is a really bad idea. it's ok not to really care about culture. is it ok to spout off about it when you're not really engaged?

Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against masturbation, just don't pretend that it is anything except self gratification.

these comments about masturbation don't strengthen your argument much.

Anyone who makes a career telling other people what to like and what not to like is a loser, however convincing pseudo-intellectual claptrap they want to wrap it in.

there's that straw man argument again.

Artists do what they like and what rings their bell, the critics cover for their inability to create by wrapping other peoples' work up in post-modernist nonsense which means nothing at all to the practising artist.

again, that's just a lot of cr*p, and it does indeed sound defensive.

I'm afraid it's you sounding defensive, all I've sounded is offensive.

well, i'm not the one making black and white, unsupported arguments, this is bad and this is good. isn't that what you're accusing the critics of doing?

yes, i've met loads of artists who weren't up on their criticism, theory, or art history, and don't care. by and large, with a few notable exceptions----and these typically working in well-established veins like landscape or portraiture, as opposed to experimental forms, these are the weakest artists i've met.

What is your test of the 'strength' of an artist? By reference to what the art critics tell you?

some of the same objective criteria you'd use to judge the worth of a photograph: did the artist use the medium well? the equipment? if not, does the "poor technique" enhance the image or detract? is the artist's work consistent and exhaustive?. it's a long list, too long to go into here---but we could start another thread?

you also seem to forget---or perhaps do not know---that there's more than a few artists out there who have written criticism as well.

Really? Not real artists, critics who dabble a bit.

your lack of knowledge is really showing.

Those who can do. Those who can't teach. Those who can' t teach teach teachers. Those who can't teach teachers become critics.

seems you don't care much for teachers, either.

You tell me who is the arbiter of what is 'fine' and what isn't and why they should be, or why we should listen to them or let it define what we enjoy and buy.

this is a straw man argument you are making. if you really knew what you were talking about here you'd know that there is no final arbiter on these matters, and no one i know who's currently making that claim for contemporary art, at least.

Then the distingtion between 'fine art' and other art is worthless, and should be abandoned.

well, i agree with you partly, although there still exists a distinction between fine and applied arts, especially in intent.

Consider my attitude to art critics as my contribution to the gestalt.

wish i could, Bob, but i don't see the contribution. just another uninformed opinion flung out there, and no real desire to have an honest discussion about it. so , i guess that's it for both of us on this one. i'm away for the weekend, happy to take this up with you on Monday, though, if you want.

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"Photography is the product of complete alienation" Marcel Proust

"I would like to see photography make people despise painting until something else will make photography unbearable." Marcel Duchamp

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