We find a common bond in art.
Art can be controversial and has divided whole countries with issues about arts acceptance in their culture, and that culture’s attempt to stop the art that is determined to define that culture.
Jesse Helms did not want Robert Mapplethorpe’s art to define American culture, even though it was too late and the art was publicly presented with great fanfare.
The Christians’ Byzantine art drove out the naturalistic Roman art for stylized abstraction that adhered better to the Christian faith and the proper presentation of it’s narrative.
The Reformation and Counter Reformation split countries for years over the mere placement of art inside the church.
This, among many other things, was debated for more than 20 years to resolve the issues surrounding the nature of art and how it should be presented. Think nudity and “The Last Judgement” by Michelangelo, which was at the center of this argument about art in the Counter-Reformation and which received a multitude of loincloths that were not original to the piece.
After many false starts, we ultimately moved to the Baroque period, a prolific period of realistic naturalism heavily clothed and full of rules of decorum, i.e., censorship.
These turning points all show cultures trying to cope with the creative acts of individuals. Artists are unique people that have the ability to alter culture by creating one significant piece. They also season culture with art that puts a curve, a refraction, on the trajectory of culture.
The more art is created, the more artists to create art, the greater the effect on the local culture, anyone’s local culture.
You might feel that this opinion is myopic, in the sense that all these turning points had things more far reaching than issues that have to do with the arts. Money, religion, politics, war, and social upheaval were all at the center of these and other controversies with art as a minor subject, you might think — but history would prove you wrong.
Art had and has such an effect on people that popes and kings fought to maintain the arts, but still under rules of decorum. So the common bond in art is the collective repression of art through the ages.
Artistic autonomy is rare in history. Sen. Jesse Helms wanted to censor art made in America, but all he did was to stop funding artists through the National Endowment for the Arts.
I see what art can do, to and for people. The work of The Studio is as big as any movement through the ages. We are here to curve culture and add our unique twist to the world we live in.
It is imperative that artists continue to do what they do. The Art Studio participates in the incredible honor of maintaining the proliferation of art to joint the artists through the ages.