Art is one of my favorite things. I have my Bachelors degree in Art History and I still flip through my old textbooks. Every city/town I visit I try to sneak in a trip to an art museum. I once stared at a painting for what must have been at least 20 minutes because I had studied it in college repeatedly and love it so very much.
Here’s my shameful secret: I don’t ‘get’ a lot of art that I’m supposed to. I may enjoy it, or even love it, but I can’t discuss the deeper meanings in a lot of art. I can tell you how it makes me feel, symbols I realize, but when you get into ‘the dichotomy of good and evil in a patriarchal world’ you lose me. I can probably bluff my way along, but I really just want to *like* art, or talk about the history around the art. I 100% support other people discussing the deeper sociological implications of the art, by the way.
Which brings me to the point of all this – I hate when I hear people talking about how they don’t feel like they can enjoy whatever art they want to. They feel like they need to be smarter or more sophisticated or more introspective or more something to be allowed to talk about what they like or what they don’t like. And that bums me out, because everyone should be able to enjoy a piece of art or hate it without being insecure. Even if your reason is ‘I like blue’ or ‘it creeps me out, I hate it’. Art is not universally good or bad for every person and not being able to spit jargon doesn’t make your opinion any less authentic than someone who can.
Just don’t be a jerk – artists work hard on pieces even if you hate it so don’t tell them how gross it is.
Sorry (not really though) for the rant, I got into a discussion about it after overhearing a girl at an art museum and it’s been on my mind.