The whole approach to criticism applies to the very act of observation, like the Art object itself, it falls into the category of a public arena, and asks the question of; meaning, interpretation, debate and value in societal terms
Many Artists I know deny strongly that they are entertainers. They seem to consider the very idea a dirty word. But in my understanding, the artists who know that it is a component of Art, are those who fair better in its unpredictable seas. However, this also depends on what ‘better’ really means. I have been alive long enough now to know that fame is not necessarily the thing to court. So, if Art is about entertaining, and fame is fickle, then what about opinions? Why take stock in them at all?
I have looked at a great deal of work from many places over my lifetime, and patterns emerge from this constant observation and attempting to make sense of why one image can make you feel longing and another can leave you cold and unresponsive. I am still impacted by this, even now. I must leave room enough to look at things afresh, and that is why for example in something even more fickle, like Fashion Design, a shifting of silhouette can make all the difference from year to year. Fashion knows its role, and so does Art.
So, with this known, Art can be maddening in its intent. Some things can excite now, itch your retina for more, but as a dear friend says, in a flash, it is like fast food. Not particularly healthy memories.In fact that is the point of some work. Today, one good idea can be stretched out and exploited to such an extent that the original is rendered useless. My point ultimately is that with all the media and imagery floating about, much rises to the surface, and these things that do, demand observation. Those observations encourage further interpretation and analysis. Criticism is part of the process. It actually is the steering that gives the work its compass.Above: Self portrait superimposed with Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni