writings on math, logic, philosophy and art

Art under capitalism

When an artist stops experimenting and settles for a specific type of content and aesthetics, critics say that it is because they “matured” and “found their voice”, “developed a unique style” etc.

AFAIK, in most cases it’s because they lost their inspiration, became lazy, and decided to only do low effort remixes if the project that sells best.

And the reason why critics (both professional and self-proclaimed) and regular consumers like settled artists so much is because it make THEIR job easier - why get into a new thing every time and wonder how to react, when you could be just reading variations of the same old thing over and over again.

Art under capitalism is a commodity like everything else and so the most valuable pieces are most expensive, however, as value in art is relative, this principle works the other way around - the most expensive pieces are most valuable i.e. the rich determine the criteria for what’s beautiful and ugly.

This undermines art, reducing it to just another form of entertainment for the elite, and marginalizing all artists who want to be something different than that.

The best thing a creative person can hope for, is to be like Stephen King - be so famous that a capitalist would consider your opinion when making their (his) business strategy.

Written on April 11, 2023

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