Artistic expression is the one of the most well-preserved and enduring aspects of life. From the Lascaux cave paintings (around 18,000 years old) of the Upper Paleolithic era to the NYC Waterfalls by Olafur Eliasson (2008), works of art can reawaken, reflect and record a universal human spirit to create, inspire and evolve. Utilizing mediums both permanent (carvings, sculptures, paintings, photography, writings, etc.) and ephemeral (dance, music, performance, consumables, etc.), artists throughout history have sought to demonstrate a wide range of uncommon talents, methods, attitudes and dreams for the benefit of complementing their respective cultural, economic and intellectual environments.
For example, ever since the introduction of photography in the early 1800's, many significant cultural and scientific breakthroughs in the optical imaging field continue to feed a global desire to illustrate various facets of a rapidly-developing world. In the case of renowned photographers such as Ansel Adams, Diane Arbus, Alfred Stieglitz, Robert Capa and Cindy Sherman, this technology was essential to realizing intellectual and primal connections to the audience through content, aesthetics, intuition and metaphor. Additionally, increased exposure of their photographic efforts was facilitated by advancements in the printing industry - as processes and materials for graphic reproduction became more affordable, a broader awareness of this innovative practice took hold in the public sphere.
Recently, mass marketing of digital cameras and output devices have granted quite reasonable means of pursuing one's own ambitions to capture, exhibit and maintain accounts of notable persons, events and surroundings. With a proliferation of pictures generated on a daily basis, an exponential amount of mediocrity has also affected social perception of the art; while most people no longer view photography as exclusive due to its current prevalence, lowered expectations have impacted the business to a certain degree. Standards of visual eminence are nowadays constantly challenged as an overabundance of average results often factor into assessing the fair value of professional judgment and expertise. Those who devote considerable time, energy, knowledge and other resources in perfecting a professional craft are inherently best equipped to produce outcomes that transcend - exercising a solid grasp of control, composition, lighting, interpretation and improvisation are key elements of a superior photograph that require years of training and dedication. Different and changing situations necessitate mental agility, physical coordination, remarkable vision and reflexive memory in order to achieve efficient excellence preferable to unsophisticated attempts by the less initiated.
After the orchestration of compelling imagery, it is equally of importance to select effective substrates so as to maximize the potential of each artistic undertaking. Even though photography is a relative newcomer in visual history, with proper conservation the lifespan of each tangible print can easily extend beyond that of its creator. Artifacts such as Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa (1503-1519), Edvard Munch's The Scream (1893-1910), Michelangelo's David (1501-1504), Joan Miro's Moon Bird (1966) and the Venus of Willendorf (24,000-22,000 BCE) have continued to exist in their original states thanks to appropriate recognition of their worth. Likewise, the longevity of photographic stills has improved dramatically as empirical research remains vigilant in its quest for perpetual enjoyment. Typical thinking from a disposable-minded society notwithstanding, photographs are progressively more durable than other forms of representational media.
Compared to the exorbitant monthly sums that cable television companies require for their superfluous services, the logic of investing a mere fraction of one's assets in a visual document which could bear immeasurable sentimental appeal is infallible. By conducting a modicum of investigation, it is revealed that photographic paper has the archival features to sustain its qualities up to 200 years. Few (if any) other of the latest creative inventions can make similar claims of such functional resilience. To informed aficionados, the fact that art only appreciates over the course of time is a convincing enough argument for collection.
Distinguishing wheat from chaff may appear to be tedious and futile, but experience will confirm the truth that employing judicious appraisals to the mundane leads to greater rewards in luxury. Art defines itself by displaying exemplary caliber among obviously pedestrian thoroughfare; only when consistent acquaintance with ideals of expressive proficiency is attained can one fully reap the benefits of enlightened sophistication.
Friday, October 21, 2011
No Ordinary Flash in the Panorama
Posted by The Thrash Prince of Hell Air, G. Tso Money (Ret.) at 10/21/2011 04:47:00 PM
Labels: Alfred Stieglitz, Ansel Adams, art, Cindy Sherman, Diane Arbus, Edvard Munch, imagination, Joan Miro, Lascaux, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Olafur Eliasson, photography, Robert Capa, Venus of Willendorf