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Art Appreciation and the Meme Factor

Thursday, June 26th, 2008

When people have a weak sense of what they like or dislike in as far as art, and these people tend to go with fads, styles, popularity or color schemes, this is known as the meme factor. The meme effect can take away an individuals’ true taste and can be so powerful that even true art connoisseurs decide that any art piece and loves anything and everything.  This is the inability to decide between a piece of work that is appealing and one that is not. This is where the fads, fashions, and symbols begin and true art appreciation ends.

This creates the subjectivity of art, where the greatness and liking of art have nothing to do with whether the piece is actually good, but with popularity, consensus, and the market, all facets that are moldable in our society.

The truth is that famous artists, musicians, novelists, painters who have created a large quantity of art work , will in all likelihood create a great deal of work that is not up to par, after all it is illogical to think that all of their work will be masterpieces.

The meme factor explains why artists such as Van Gogh, were not appreciated at all at certain times. Today they are considered among the best artists of humankind.  It is interesting to see that during his lifetime, Van Gogh sold only one painting, while today, his painting Portrait of Dr. Gachet (1905) has sold by as much as 82,5 million dollars.


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