Description | Ali Simonds

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Suppose you’ve ever visited a contemporary art gallery or an exhibition. In that case, you might hear some disagreeing comments from people I like to refer to as “haters” or the more arty term “skeptics.” They might say stuff like a blind person could do that, a child could do that, that painting makes no sense and whatnot. But is there a bit of truth to what they say? Here are ten common misconceptions about contemporary art.

  1. “You have two options-loves it or hate it.”

There is no general formula to making contemporary art. It’s not like maths, where 1+1 always equals 11. Now you probably think I’m bad at math, and that’s reasonable. But when art is concerned, it’s indefinable and self-definable simultaneously. The same way our taste in music differs, taste in art also differs, but that doesn’t have to resort to you condemning any piece of art you don’t think is all that good.

  1. “That looks easy; even I could do that!”

Well, you can’t. Every piece of art is as unique to an artist as is a fingerprint. Art doesn’t just come to be. There’s always a behind-the-scenes story to an art piece that’s unique. Hard work and careful planning were put into making it what it is. Next time you hear someone say this, tell them to try it out. If they’re severe enough, they might discover a hidden talent. Or not.

  1. “This fancy art is for rich people.”

In all honesty, there’s a limit to how much you can spend on art if you’re not wealthy. Some of the most famous contemporary art pieces sell for a fortune that’s not ideal for the average man. This doesn’t mean there aren’t any affordable ones you can purchase. Don’t be quick to forget that there are just as amazing artists who are upcoming and most of their art is pretty affordable.

  1. “Contemporary art is for snobby elites.”

Sure, snobs may like and enjoy art. However, contemporary art is made for people who know the value and true meaning of art, including the non-snob population, so get rid of this ideology if that’s what you think.

  1. “It’s not my thing.”

If you have zero knowledge of a topic, how would you know if you’d like it? For contemporary art, you need no art knowledge to understand and appreciate art. Telling yourself that art is not your thing might mean that you don’t genuinely enjoy art, which is kind of weird, or that you’ve not had time to explore the art world. If your case is the latter, I recommend you visit an art gallery or exhibition.

  1. “That’s an ugly piece of painting.”

Nobody should ever say this about a piece of art. Not one person. What is beauty? Nowadays, beauty is classified based on what’s appealing to the eyes, but you forget you’re not the only one with eyes. That’s right, art is emotion, and if you don’t see beyond the lines and patterns of a painting, you have not understood the artist. That’s okay. What’s not okay is condemning it entirely.

  1. “Success means going against the conventional”

Indeed, any works of past unconventional or controversial artists make a massive sum of money. Nowadays, what was considered vulgar is now becoming accepted. Artists should be permitted to have their ways of expressing art because no good ever comes from following a stringed set of rules. Being unconventional is what makes artists.

  1. “Money controls the art world.”

You see, money is a motivating factor in every industry except NGOs. If artwork is pricey, a lot of work has been done, usually by the managers, but this doesn’t mean it doesn’t carry intrinsic value. Most artists make art just because of love and not for the money per se because many talented artists still put their art out despite not having huge returns.

  1. “Artists are weird antisocial people.”

Artists are not antisocial because they spend a lot of time creating art. Although they have heightened emotions, they still live everyday lives.

  1. “Is there a point to this painting?”

People who want to buy or promote artists’ work usually ask if there’s a reason for art. Again, art is emotion, and its beauty is subjective.

Conclusion

Hopefully, you learned a few things about the most common art misconceptions you’ve heard. Now, when someone speaks ill of art out of misinformation, you could tell them the truth.