Thursday, March 6, 2008

Here's a question...

Stemming from this post in hopes of starting another dialog.

Should art be a "job?"

Should you be paid to "do artistic things?"

What do funds mean to an artist? Why not "fund" yourself in other ways?

I am struggling with the role money plays in poetry, specifically. There is an obvious dichotomy between the "art world" and the "real world." Whatever the "real world" means.

I know I'm supposed to get over it or whatever, but I just have a hard time understanding how creativity and any kind of monetary system can coexist. Maybe I just don't understand "creativity" enough, or maybe I just flat out don't understand money. Isn't poetic/artistic thought supposed to expose the flaws of "reality?" I don't understand the way "reality" works, maybe.


Mike Young said...

I like the idea of a gift economy. If you are a street performer wearing a funny hat and rupturing the reality of the world around you for a temporary blurt, then my dollar bill is to keep you there, keep you producing my entertainment and art, so that you don't have to think about "when should I quit doing this and go find enough money that I'll be able to buy sausages tonight." Instead, you can think "good, this is making me sausage money; I won't stop."

Port this example to different scales, and there you go.

Caveat: I have a harder time paying artists who already have a lot of money. Which is, of course, just one example of this stuff getting interminably complicated.

Bryan said...

I had $5 to last me the whole week but I gave $1 to a busker. Now I have $4 for the week. That's a real life application of mathematics.

Can you still be an "artist" if you have lots of money? As soon as you can afford to be eccentric you are no longer on my radar. (I have radar.)

Alex said...

Are you a productive poet when you are fucking BROKE? No. You worry.

I think you have to find that sausage money equilibrium.

But I have a real problem with buskers in Ashland. They are timid. Who the fuck wants to pay a timid busker? The whole point is getting the music OUT THERE, not incomprehensible mumbling.

Would you stop writing if you were rich? Do you think your desire to express would change? Do you solely write due to "poverty" or frustration with your financial situation?

I do think there is validity to people getting famous = people starting to suck. But, with music especially, I wonder how much that is due to the fact that they once felt like they were ours and now everyone is sharing them. Like being 5 again with that goddamn red firetruck.