What does it mean to admire art?

Kadir Nelson’s “Art Connoisseurs”

By Françoise Mouly

Be it music or painting, there always seems to be a gatekeeping culture when it comes to admiring art. The movies, exhibitions, abstract painting and things which look extremely daunting to start with. Art, it’s as vague as the word gets, it can be anything from arcane texts of an author to contemporary avant garde music that’s equally tortuous.

Françoise comparison of the Kadir Nelson’s cover art to Norman Rockwell’s Art connoisseur made me wonder, what is it really like to admire art.

Admiring Art ? I don’t think I am the right person to answer what this means, I mean I am the resident pretentious hipster trash, of course I have fantasied about sipping wine and looking at art, being an apostate to capitalism, criticising the privileged while still mingling with the elite–a resident pretentious hipster trash you guys!

Although, I have also felt really out of place whenever I tried to visit places like art museums. I feel like I don’t know enough, like everyone around me has this inner sensor that understands and has the ability to understand stuff where as I am just replicating the emotions.

I think that’s why looking at alternate art like street art or hip-hop as a form of expression feels liberating. These recalcitrants aim to extirpate the bounds to expression set by conventional artists.

Though something about even this approach doesn’t sit well with me. I just feel like not liking something which I perceive as elitist is also my way of feeling “intellectually” more capable than other.

I don’t know honestly, what does admiring art really mean? Is it admiring the emotions a piece of art invokes–is it analysing and studying it? It is associating some personal ancient value to it? It it understanding its cultural significance? I would be really glad if you can give me answers to these questions!

Also : Françoise Mouly has been the art editor at The New Yorker since 1993 : WOAHHHH!

Word Prompt

Generate Random words with meaning that have to be used in the article that I write. Helps with my shitty vocabulary, takes away the decision fatigue of selecting the word. You can check out the implementation and read more about it here 

More on Not helpful Writing and Self Improvement? You can also check out more about things I do with python !

  • Arcane Mysterious; Esoteric
  • Apostate One Who Abandons Log-Held Religious Or Political Convictions
  • Extirpate To Destroy; To Exterminate; To Cut Out
  • Tortuous Winding; Twisting; Excessievly Complicated
  • Recalcitrant Obstinately Resistant To Authority; Difficult To Manage

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