Oil Painting Blog

Blog about oil paintings by Robert Dawson

Relevant art today

It seems to me that art today should either be pretty or make a point, with the former being the wiser of choices. Art no longer has to make an aristocrat look stately or serve the Church. Today, it's free to do whatever it wants, including announce that it's not art at all or, conversely, that everything is.

But to make art relevant or meaningful to modern audiences, it needs to mean something to them. And in this age, people, at least those with Internet access, seem to be thinking about such issues as information overload, trivial virtual social connections, the increasing loss of privacy online, and rampant identify theft.

Then again, art can address any social issue and remain relevant. And it should. It's visual communication. It should say everything that's interesting visually, which is just about everything.

And I say that making pretty art is wiser because, at the end of the day, after either our battles have been won or we are tired of fighting them, what matters most are that we still want to fight, to live, and to appreciate the value of living. And beauty adds value.