Fine Art and Despair


I’ve Been talking to people in the know about the art market in Santa Fe. Most notably, my art teacher Geoffrey Lawrence. Turns out this place is kaput. Not so much Santa Fe, and our little world, as the entire concept of investing in art.

Used to be gallery curators educated people about emerging artists–which ones are good investments, which ones show promise, who has a great sense of line and form, who is an amazing colorist, and whatnot. But nowadays, according to what these particular people say, the culture of art investments just doesn’t really exist anymore.

Well, the world changes. What interests me, as a ghostwriter and author, about this phenomenon, is the “lost cause” aspect of it. Hearing this news actually makes me more attracted to fine art, not less, because I’m a sucker for lost causes.

The Cause of Art

By virtue of the fact that I had a conversation about this with a bunch of artists, the cause of fine art can’t be completely lost. At least these folks cared about it, so that’s three people. The fine art world, which was once a big deal, has simply become a much smaller niche.

Perhaps a much much much smaller niche, but a niche nonetheless. Perhaps its a niche that’s no longer backed by big buyers, but hearts and minds are still focussed on it, and there are still people who care. That’s where I feel like I come in, as a writer.

I have a great fantasy about writing a novel about the art scene in Santa Fe. Partly about the conflict I just described, and partly about the conflict between contemporary artists, who go in for avante garde self-expression, and traditional artists, who go in for mostly accurate representation of the figure. To me, it’s Santa Fe’s Bonfire of the Vanities. Anyway, I don’t know if I’ll get around to it, but better yet, perhaps a local will hire me to ghostwrite something of that nature.

My Own Little Bonfire of the Vanities

I’ve longed for some time to ghostwrite a book for an older artist who has seen the art market’s ups and downs. This would be someone who has been in the scene for decades and knows art from a technical perspective, a social one, a financial one, and a creative one, of course, as well.

As the pendulum of our society swings more and more towards science and technology, I think society’s appreciation for those who have dedicated their lives to the arts is dwindling, but these are fascinating people and what they do is important. Well, a writer can dream.

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