Artist's Statements

When a visual artist submits to writing an artist’s statement they are sacrificing their power, their mojo, their independence as visual communicators to the larger art world game, to the realm of galleries, museums and other lampreys on the act of creation.  It is like bending over and spreading your ass cheeks for your doctor.  You submit to his realm.  “Now, this is not gonna hurt.”    If a person who has dedicated their career to the visual arts cannot read a work of visual art thus gaining purchase on its meaning then they ought to sell shoes.  The whole reason art exists is that the idea cannot be expressed in words unless you’re Jenny Holtzer.  Statements about art, if they must be made, should be created by an astute other, not the artist themselves.  I have been painting and writing for fifty years and I can’t begin to write even a short paragraph about what my art means or what it is.  It’s like asking a dog what their dog statement is - “Well - let’s see, I wag my tail, I like to jump into the water and I like to snooze in the sun - oh! And chase balls.  Thanks poochy, this clears up your meaning.  Any artist who writes a statement about their work has been duped.  If your work needs a statement in order to clarify its intention or its purpose and some work is enriched by this text,  hire a grad student to write about it or an aspiring art critic. Just say no to artist’s statements.