Posts Tagged ‘Tate Modern’

Art for art’s sake, money for God’s sake

I see that Damien Hirst has an exhibition on at the Tate Modern at the moment.  Sheep in preservative, sawn up bovines and crystal skulls; all the usual stuff.  Why is this Modern Art lark so hard to get a handle on?  I can appreciate a great song, a well-written book, a “classic” movie, a painting and even mime.  Well, perhaps not mime but at least I get the artistic intent and the skill that goes into the silent prancing around.  Hirst and that other modern “great”, Tracy Emin, just leave me a bit puzzled to be honest.  Is their work “art” because they profess it to be?  Or because the art critics say it is?  Would we be able to claim such intent if we stitched the names of former lovers onto a tent a la Ms Emin?  Is it a state of mind?  Or, as I suspect, do you have to have studied art in order to be taken seriously by the modern art aficionados?  You must, at the very least, carry yourself with a sense of utmost seriousness and dress somewhat provocatively to display your inner artistic “otherness” and the immense importance of your, ahem, “work”.  At the risk of being considered naive, it all feels a little Emperor New Clothes- ish.  Are we all the dupes in some sort of (very well played out) con?  The Con is conducted in “edgy” London boroughs like Hoxton and Shoreditch; all goatee beards, skinny jeans and “statement” headwear.  If we are in any way the victims in some almighty hoodwinking trick our number does not include the aforementioned Mr Hirst; his Crystal Skull was recently valued at fifty million pounds.