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Lessons in ART #1. Kitsch and Art

Kitsch and Art

I was getting really annoyed and frustrated with all the pseudo-intellectuals around me. I was also really losing my patience with everybody calling anything pink, iridescent and glittery, kitschy, or tacky. I was into my 3rd year and in general, was impatient with my studies and my fellow students. I felt like I knew it all, nothing left to teach me, time to get out there and conquer the world with my art. I imagine that we were all feeling the same as we were approaching the end of our studies.

“Fish-Eye” – Digital Interpretation of my Drawing of The Same Name @ Barbara Adler Art 2021

In Art School, to call something “kitschy” or “tacky” was so insulting and belittling. It was the utmost terrible criticism one could receive. One could just crumble up in a corner and die. We all wanted to be trailblazing intellectual artists. So, one can imagine what happened to that poor student whose work was considered kitsch.

Unless that was the first and foremost objective by backward logic; to make a statement in being or doing kitsch. There was always that foxy student whose work WAS tacky, saw the way the wind was blowing, had no intention of being browbeaten by the professors or by the students, narrowed their eyes, straightened their back, and declared out loud that that was their intent. We all knew that was total hooey, but he got his passing mark and the rest of us just moved away in disgust.

If we go by definition (Merriam-Webster), “Kitsch” is “something that appeals to the popular or lowbrow taste and is often of poor quality”.

I was bored and decided on a whim, that my next work was going to poke fun at things called kitsch and at people that love kitsch. I declared my intentions, both on the subject matter and on my thoughts of people that were kitschy. I just wanted to have fun and to be a bit sarcastic. Well, that backfired! I actually managed to make a piece of art that was kitsch and was good! The people that I wanted to taunt actually loved the piece! Worst yet, I was given a “Badge of Honor” as a kitsch artist! Me, lowbrow? Populist?

After taking a deep breath, I wore my badge with honor. The work was well executed, not lowbrow or of poor quality. It was a piece of art that had a life of its own. As an artist, one must realize that the second the work is made public, it is on its own. As an artist, say what you intend! Say it in the language of art. Mean it. Otherwise, the artist’s work is liable to be misconstrued as far as the artist is concerned. As far as the artwork itself, like I said it has a life of its own where the audience and critics will tell a story that could be or could not be related to the artist's original intent and meaning.

“Dragon Fly -2” Digital Interpretation to My Drawing by Same Name @Barbara Adler Art 2021

When buying a piece of art, the buyers have their own reasons and interpretations for that specific piece. The connection between the piece and the potential buyer must be intuitive. Almost like “love at first sight”. The artist, as a proud parent, must nurture this relationship, assist the artwork in its first steps towards its new owner.

Everybody needs art. There is Art for everyone’s state of mind, desires, and tastes. Take a break, reflect and delve into some of my art, to my stories.

All the works on this blog are for sale and are Barbara Adler originals. I love talking about my art, so feel free to DM/contact me regarding my art and possibly making it yours.

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