Monday, August 8, 2011

Originality vs. Authenticity

I've been struggling a little bit with the idea that art is becoming less meaningful, less technical, less original... My husband and I were just talking last night about how it seems like art is being stretched to its limits and things that were never considered art before now "count." As someone who studied art in school it's tough for me to see people without any training become well-known for something like slapping some color on a canvas (which in my mind, anyone can do) or taking a photo that just happened to turn out really well. It seems like any ideas I have have already been done, or anyone can re-create any idea they really like. And it seems like more and more the DIY world is making art irrelevant or washed out or ineffective...


Lo and behold I popped over to No Small Dreams this morning and read this:


"Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent. And don’t bother concealing your thievery - celebrate it if you feel like it. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: 'It’s not where you take things from - it’s where you take them to.' "

— Jim Jarmusch

I guess I just need to remember that authenticity is what counts over originality? Maybe...

2 comments:

Kyle I said...

I think your work is both, Britt. And I get lovely comments all the time on the uniqueness of your art, hanging in my home and Yuki's! Your art is so recognizably yours (we run into it now and then at Mars Hill)...and that's a big part of why I love your art so much!

Britt@artbybritt said...

Thanks, Kyle! Such kind words.

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