Who’s afraid of white, yellow and pink?
I think that the original works by Barnet Newman – the series Who’s Afraid of Red, Yellow and Blue I to IV – may be some of the most controversial modern pieces around.
As the names suggest, they consist of various arrangements of large geometrical shapes in the primary colours red, yellow and blue.
Two out of four have been heavily vandalised while on display. At least one has been damaged even more during restoration, which was supposedly done using fairly ordinary paint in slightly wrong colours, applied with ordinary rollers.
I have to admit, it is not my favourite work of art – they feel too aggressive somehow, especially #3, it makes me uncomfortable to look at it.
Some people claim ‘they could do it too on a Saturday afternoon in the backyard’.
Then again, what is it that defines art…?
Is it the artist? Is it the audience? Is it education? Is it the meaning of the art piece?
If it would be the first, everyone would be an artist, which doesn’t seem to be the case. If it would be the second, probably no one would be an artist, as it is hard to find art that everyone agrees on. If it would be the third, it would suggest art is defined by a degree, like being a doctor or a dentist. If it would be the latter, many great pieces would tumble for lack of ‘understanding’ – even the Mona Lisa is still a bit of a mystery (though the commercial below explains a lot! ;))
Do I see myself as an artist? I draw. I paint. I photograph.
Looking at my progress over time, on this blog, I can see I have moved forward. I wanted to develop as a photographer. People like it, I can tell by the likes and followers. But would I call myself an artist…?
… I don’t know…
Maybe it is best to leave the label as it is. At least I am not expected to be ‘artistic’ either and that does not burden me with expectations 🙂