Monday, September 18, 2006

Jim Messina

I was reading an interview with Jim Messina the other day and found out that he’s one of many celebs who enjoy painting (others being Joni Mitchell, Paul McCartney, Jane Seymour, Donna Summer, Tony Bennett, Jennifer Aniston, Michelle Pfeiffer...)

He said that it helped him look at his music differently when it came time to mix it in the studio ( even *sounds* like the same process).

“A hot color might be something with a lot of high end on it, and a cool color might be ‘bassier,’ so to speak. Learning the perspective and how to create the illusion that something is further away from something, while another item is further away than that, and there has to be an object in there that gives you that reading where your eye sees it and sees the illusion – and the same is true with music. There has to be something in there that tells you that’s ‘distance’ and this is ‘up front.’"

I've always known that painting lets you see things differently, and I guess it lets you hear things differently as well!

Sunday, September 03, 2006


One of the things I love the most about the guerrilla painter is how profound his off-the-cuff replies sometimes are. Last week I mentioned to him a story I’d heard on NPR about how Jan Brueghel collaborated with Rubens, one painting the landscape and the other the figures. It seems the art market in 16th century Belgium was so lively that artists arranged themselves into assembly lines, each contributing what he did best. Carl’s comment was, “Back then, art wasn’t Art.”

That got me thinking, “Who defines what 'Art' is, anyway?"
Is it the establishment? Whatever is seen in the context of museums, galleries, schools and publishers?
Is it the investors, the collectors, the critics?
Is it the person who views the work?
Is it the artist him/herself?
Is Art anything that’s done for the sake of pure expression rather than for commercial or practical purposes?

We have more artists today that ever before, as well as more techniques & materials, not to mention more history to refer to.

Art mirrors so many different values: innovation, emotion, skill, color, human form, religious truths, patriotism, irony...

Maybe trying to define it is just a trap, something that gets in the way of creating, appreciating, communicating, practicing & playing.