Skip navigation

So democracy is great – except when it shapes the actual work of art. I do not believe a great work of art has ever been created by communal consensus, let alone by multiple editors. There will never be a wiki-masterpiece. This is because art, if it has any value at all, is the product of deep and often rationally incommunicable perceptions, and to try and explain or share those perceptions in a communally created artwork will negotiate and re-edit them to banality.

But, I hear you roar, there are obvious objections to that claim. What about devised theatre and the films of Mike Leigh? But the reason Leigh’s pieces work so well is that talented actors are doing the interaction: what you are seeing is not a democratic free-for-all but an elite. Good art is the product of talent. All the forces in our culture that weaken our belief in talent deny this fundamental fact, but it always returns to haunt us.

Participatory art is a denial of talent. It panders to a cosy lie, that everyone is equally able to create worthwhile art. What chance have we of nurturing those rare wonders in our midst, the born artists, if we claim this infantile right to put on a badge that says “artist”?

Jonathan Jones (blog post)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: