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Thread: Art vs Artist who are terrible people.

  1. #11
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    mr drinky's Avatar
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    Paul Johnson, the conservative historian, wrote a book a while back called The Intellectuals, in which he described a number of philosophers, artists, mathematicians etc. and their less savory sides. Though the book was light on scholarship, it was a sort of fun gossipy read. The underlying theme in that book was that these great minds/people treated those around them like crap. I don't think the traits Salty mentioned: narcissism, hubris, passion, ego and alcoholism often lead to people treating others with respect and dignity.

    k.
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  2. #12
    Senior Member Mrmnms's Avatar
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    Van Gogh , so the man cut off his ear. What's the big deal? We've all cut all of a little something when distracted, right?

  3. #13
    Senior Member Lucretia's Avatar
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    Love Wagner's music. Where would we be without the classic "Kill the Wabbit" Bugs Bunny episode? For a brass player, Wagner is right up there as one of the more fun orchestral composers.

    I never saw the big deal about Van Gogh until seeing a piece in person. Then it was "WOW! NOW I get it." Amazing stuff.

    I used to work with a guy who was an absolutely brilliant engineer (for those of you who remember typewriters, he was one of the people who brought us the the IBM with the "ball" instead of individual keys.) He was also an amazing artist--sculpture, paint, you name it. Living proof that you can be both technical and artistic. He decided to paint miniatures, entered an international competition, and took second place. He was throughly disgusted--his opinion was that given the short amount of time he'd been doing miniatures there were flaws in his work, and if he won an award the judges obviously didn't know what they were doing, so he didn't enter any more competitions. He was also a lyricist--his most well known piece was only a children's song, but covered by Burl Ives, Rafi, Danny Kaye, and others. I was lucky enough to have him for a mentor for about 6 months. He might not have been in the same class as a Van Gogh or a Wagner, but had the most amazing mind of anyone I've ever met. He didn't seem to be too difficult to get along with, although he didn't suffer fools gladly. One of the best compliments I've ever received was when he told me "You're one of the few people I can tolerate."

    For some of the great artists, it must be (have been) incredibly difficult to see or hear the world in strange or beautiful ways that are/were so obvious to them, and not have anyone with the same understanding/perspective to discuss it with. Think about how frustrating it is to talk knives with someone who tosses them in the dishwasher and sees nothing wrong with it--and imagine what it would be like if everyone else was like that. If someone is out at the extreme limits of ability, it must seem like no one understands what you're doing or has any sense. Enough to drive one to be antisocial and develop some drug/alchohol issues.
    Now is not the time to bother me. And it's always now. Wiley Miller

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lucretia View Post
    Love Wagner's music. Where would we be without the classic "Kill the Wabbit" Bugs Bunny episode? For a brass player, Wagner is right up there as one of the more fun orchestral composers.
    Don't forget about that scene from Apocalypse Now.

    k.
    "In Japan they don't call it Japanese food, they just call it food." -- Children's Hospital Quote

  5. #15
    Senior Member Duckfat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrmnms View Post
    Van Gogh , so the man cut off his ear. What's the big deal? We've all cut all of a little something when distracted, right?
    Who you jivin' with that Cosmik Debris?

  6. #16
    Senior Member markenki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lucretia View Post
    I never saw the big deal about Van Gogh until seeing a piece in person. Then it was "WOW! NOW I get it." Amazing stuff.
    I agree. A Van Gogh in person is very, very different from what you see on a printed page. Visiting the Van Gogh museum in Amsterdam was a religious experience for me. And I'm an atheist.

  7. #17
    Senior Member tkern's Avatar
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    I think part of it might be direction. If you're a very passionate person and you're writing/painting/composing but there is still that left over push for something else maybe then that energy is directed to anit-semetic rants/blinding- ear shedding love/ absolute drunkeness and drug abuse, etc. e.e. cummings living a bohemian lifestyle then becoming a huge McCarthy supporter, Cat Stevens being this mellow, "love" based music then turning to Muslim at the height of western aggression towards Islam. Also Robert Frost and Ralph Waldo Emerson and their seditary lifestyle vs. Charles Bukowski and Jack Kerouac. I know I'm deeply crossing genres here but I hope my point is understood.

  8. #18


    Just gona leave this here.

  9. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by eshua View Post


    Just gona leave this here.
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  10. #20
    Senior Member GeneH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don Nguyen View Post
    For some reason, I welcome the crazy terrible artists. I haven't been able to pinpoint my logic yet, but I'll think about it.
    Because they don't live in the mundane reality most of us do. Let's face it, there isn't a single "How to Sharpen Your Knife" video on the charts.

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