Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Art and The Southerner

If you ask someone about ART in the South, most will point to the music scene and say something lofty about how all music is art.  Local hipsters will mention their season tickets to Schermerhorn and mutter under their breath 'but you've probably never heard of it..."   Ok ok ok, but what about Visual Art?  Most folks likely think of Art in the South as a pyramid of cans in the pale moonlight.  (Extra GOB points if you know the origin of that phrase) but in truth, the South has a thriving Visual Arts culture.

I was reminded of this just this last morning when walking to work from the bus stop.  It's only one block from my bus to the office and I came upon this nifty sign above. This art gallery used a special projector to put their name on the sidewalk in front of their establishment - very arty, yes? Modern, yes?  High Tech, also yes. As I stood there and marveled at the light, the box and the fact that the thing had to be on a timer, I also remembered that there are four (count 'em 4) art galleries in the single block from my bus to the office.  These are not the only galleries in the area, and in fact not the only art galleries in Downtown.  Art Plays a big part of the culture in the south.

In fact, just this last weekend, they had one of the Saturday Night Gallery Crawls.  Starts at one gallery and moves gallery to gallery.  It's a great way to see new art, visit more galleries and do it all with a crowd of like minded folks. (I'm sure there was plenty of 'unoaked chard' available for those hipsters who weren't at the Schermerhorn, Bubba!)

This is just another example of how I won't be part of the south.  (No, I have no idea what unoaked chard is, let alone how it goes with Visual Art) The fact of the matter is that I can't draw a straight line with a ruler.  My contribution to the world of art is to paint my house and stay home. Now, don't get me wrong, I enjoy art. I grew up surrounded by good art. My mother was an artist, and a fairly good one.  Books on art were all over our house.   But when I look at some of the things they call art these days - like a statue of a three headed monkey made from pencil shavings - I just sort of stare at it with wide eyed wonder.  Throw some paint at a canvas from several feet away and call it art and I sort of turn my head sideways and start to whimper.   Show me where some artist has carved a religious likeness out of his own feces and I want to just curl up in a fetal position and cry.

Yeah, Yeah, I know, art should evoke some emotion and if i want to cry because someone makes art the way I clean snot from my nasal passages then that's "art."  I guess.  Yet another reason I stay home.

Let the Hipster Southerners have at all that "art." ...and unoaked chard.  

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