Yes, we artists hear that a lot and you know what, we secretly admit that this statement is accurate: Modern art surely appears as a decline of true visual arts and indeed, you can absolutely do it yourself (or any of your child, under supervisiont though in certain circumstances). I am not the only one saying that: Picasso clearly settled the issue: “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up”.
We all know that true visual arts are about faithfully representing beauty: a lovely shore with a sailboat in the background, the portrait of a women with a fan or even the sculpture of a massive naked man thinking.
Things started going wrong at the XIXth century with the birth of “impressionism” when so-called artists intentionally blurred the scenery to pretend creating a style, using colors that were not even there although they had them right in front of their eyes. I think of Matisse, Cezanne who painted at least fifty times the Sainte Victoire Mountain which indeed only to prove he was a lousy painter or Van Gogh who was so poor he had to cut his own ear for he could not afford buying a tube of red.
This was not the end of it: art evolved with so-called “abstraction” at the beginning of the XXth century, which is another word to express the lack of artistic technique and imagination.
So let us make modern art and loads of money by using the same technique as those abstract fraud “painters”.
Let us start with the easiest: Yves Klein made an exhibition in 1957 with a room where nothing was exhibited. That is probably the easiest way to make modern art. Do not be surprised however if one admirer asks you whether the radiator or the shrimp/avocado “amuse-gueule” is for sale. Klein pursued his pointless quest notably by painting blue monochromes. He apparently had a thing with blue. Rumors say that he had an awkward relationship with a Smurf. To do it, it is pretty simple: Just buy a very large canvas, an ultramarine/electric blue paint bucket (or the patented “International Klein blue”) and a paint roller. Paint the canvas and there you are, you have just made a Klein’s monochrome
Let us now turn to Pollock, probably one of the most overrated painters of all time. The most difficult part is not to paint like Pollock but by being in the same state of mind as he was: be angry, unsettled and nervous. Drink about ten Red Bulls and some booze and there you are: you are ready to “Pollock paint”. Again, any child could do it (besides the dangerous preparation indeed). Put a large cloth on the ground and angrily drip as many colors as you could find on it. You really must make a mess but it is really worth it: your Pollock is worth millions of dollars.
Have you heard of Lucio Fontana? He was an Argentine-Italian painter and sculptor born at the dawn of the XXth century. Fontana was quite confusing and confused, certainly because he had a thing for sharp objects. He was considered a dangerous man at his time. Again, his technique is very simple: buy a canvas, paint it with a monochrome color (or not) and, as the sherry on the cake, make a few cuts on the canvas (e.g. with a cutter). You are not Mack the knife, you are Fontana and you will surely make a lot of money.
One interesting thing is to determine when all that so-called abstract “art” begun. There are controversies as to whom first paved the way to abstraction: Malevitch or Kandinsky? I actually do not care: it then was just “in the air” at the beginning of last century. Although Kandinsky had some technical skills, one cannot say the same about Malevich. In 1915, he produced a painting representing a black cross on a white background and he went further in 1918 by exhibiting a painting called “White Square on White Background”. Look at the gallery, you do not have to be a rocket scientist to do that and claim your money from Gagosian.
Although I believe I have proved modern artists are nothing but frauds, let us finish with one of the worst: Marcel Duchamp and his “ready-made(s)”. Not only one cannot find any art in his production, Duchamp, was also the laziest one. His technique is plain and simple and you can do it at home without any hazard: take anything, anything really: mom’s lipstick, dad’s wig, a piece of cement, a wheelchair or an old Oreo. Give it then a mysterious title, add some game words if you wish. To give you an idea, Duchamp made quite an impression exhibiting a urinal he called “Fountain”.
I could go on and on… as this second-degree article, I believe that there are at least to ways to appreciate an artwork. First, you are touched by the piece and second, you want to dig in the artistic path the artist went through including his background, psychology, goal and culture. On the contrary, if you are indifferent to the artwork, to understand why the artist did it may bring a second sight at the painting and maybe makes you ackowledge the work done and admire the evolution of the artist if not his work.
Anyway an artist willing to please everyone can hardly be called an artist in my humble opinion.