Ulrik Gliese - Visual Arts - Negatives and Positives in Art
Maryland, October 2002
It amazes me that so much of the established art today is so negative. When we want to express things we can, at the extreme ends, choose either a purely positive angle or a purely negative angle. Limiting all artistic expression to these extremes, or even worse to only one of the extremes, is very one-sided and also misleading as the outcome does not reflect actual life where both coexist in harmony and disharmony. In established contemporary art, there is a preponderance of negative expression conveying the message that many aspects of our present world and lives are rather miserable. Sadly, this is essentially how it is. Therefore, these issues rightfully have to be investigated and expressed through the arts. Unfortunately, there is also a strong tendency to devalue and repress art that carries the slightest trace of positivism. The result is an art conveying that not only are things bad but also that there is no hope of improvement. This is now leading contemporary art down an unfortunate dead-end spiral that leaves no way out.
In my opinion, art is supposed not only to inform us but also to enlighten us. It should expand our horizons, lead us in new directions, and bring us to higher emotional, intellectual and spiritual levels. For sure, there are lots of things to be negative about, but instead of being all negative let us leave room for the more nuanced and hopeful views as well. Let us acknowledge and promote not only all negative expression but also negative expression with a positive outlook, positive expression with a negative outlook and all positive expression. In that way, we will be informed and enlightened about both negative and positive things as well as their interaction, and will, hopefully, gain a constructive view of life rather than the totally self-destructive view that is being forced by much of the established art today.
Pessimism has a lot of prestige but no muscle!
This website makes extensive use of frames and your viewing experience will be much better when using a frame capable browser. If you see this message, you are using a browser that does not support frames or has frame support disabled.
Table of Contents
Print of the Month