Monday, June 30, 2008

visual vs musical art

my friends Jon, Critter and I were talking about art and artists last week at New World. A visual artist that loves music, Jon has found the musical arts a chore, creatively speaking. On the other hand, Critter is a talented singer-songwriter that (I assume) has not dabbled in the visual arts. I, of course, am a creatively stifled failure at both musical and visual arts (in other words, a critic)- as well as athletics.

The discussion was about people being able to do both visual and musical art at a high level. Jon's argument was that they are very different forms of art and creativity, coming from different places in the brain. His contention is that it is difficult(or impossible) for a person to be highly artistic in both areas. I, of course, disagreed, thinking that creativity and artistry are something artists have and many of them (the good ones) can attain a high level of creativity and artistry in both disciplines. I see it like multi-sport athleticism (you are either an athlete or not and you are either an artist or not- the disciplines are interchangeable for many).

Of course, the beauty of the debate is this... if I mention such an artist, he can prove (through debate) that the visual (or musical) art is of lower quality than the discipline in which the artist is universally acknowledged to be at a high level. It is much like that debate over multi-sport athletes but without statistical analysis to prove ones point.

However, as anecdotal proof of my rightness on the subject, I enter into evidence this video of Joseph Arthur's song She Paints Me Gold which is basically a collection of stills of a painting in the creative process at his art studio in Brooklyn. Touche.


murf said...

Are you joking? From a technical standpoint, how difficult is that "art?" Pretty much what a 1st grader could do with the same materials, and probably in far less time. So visually, this is not technically excellent art. The song? So-so. I'd say your buddy is correct.

kristi said...

i don't want to enter into this debate, but i just have to comment about how amazingly beautiful that song is...i heart joseph arthur. :)