Ranting that Writing is an Art Form….

writers paradise?

I have been told by other writers that Ireland reveres its writers so much, that they allow them to live tax free in the Emerald Isle. Now I’m not sure if this is true or not, and perhaps some investigation is in order, but if that rumour  isn’t reason enough to love the country, I don’t know what is!

It seems to me that often than not, if you are an art-tist  in almost any field of creativity, you are given special treatment by the people around you.  Fashion – especially haute-couture is seen (by its loyal followers) as art.   In fact, it takes something as drastic and hideous such as an anti-Semitic  rant to push society, who has forgiven your foibles such as rudeness and temper tantrums over the collective edge and tell you your behaviour is totally unacceptable, because, well, as an art-tist you are highly strung.   Although, as an aside, if Natalie Portman hadn’t been the shoo-in for the Academy Award this year, garnering her so much media attention, would her statement of shock and disgust, that appeared to be the nail in the coffin for Mr Galliano’s career at Dior, have had as much strength behind it? And, just for the record, where is the news coverage of all the other shocked and outraged Jewish actors and actresses? What is the truth behind this story? Has this drunken, slurry rant, that allegedly occurred not long after Galliano’s lover had died, been around on a mobile phone for several months and only now just released at such an appropriate time as to best get rid of a designer that a fashion house had been struggling to set itself free from? Or am I just seeing conspiracies behind even hedge?

                                          

Visual modern art works, (Barnett Newman’s Voice of Fire  or  Jackson Pollock  Blue Poles) even if the work looks, to my obviously uneducated eyes, like paint splatters or vaguely of a war medal, that my six year old can do and it is considered high art. Misogynistic or bimboette music stars are considered artists and paid millions for their work. As are people in Hollywood for pretending to be people  they really are not, doing things they really cannot.

 But ask the average punter what a writer is, and the term ‘artist’ is one that they will more than likely not be the one to out with. In fact, whilst reading of the demise of a favourite book store back home  I was stunned to read in the comments that some people hold the opinion that books were not works of art. They were simply blocks of bound paper printed in the tens of thousands for the making of a profit.

Contrary to Corrie Perkins, I don’t see books being “works of art”. Art is a one-off creation; books are printed in their tens of thousands, by companies, for profit. They are indeed commodities. Authors such as Bryce Courtney, Wilbur Smith, Jackie Collins, etc are not artists, they write for a living, and often to a formula.  au contraire | nsw – February 23, 2011, 8:09AM 

 

I’m sorry….? Stories aren’t works of art? Excuuuuuuuuuse me?  Unless you have spent hours in front of the computer researching, writing, editing, and sweating the small stuff such as word counts; if you have not poured over books and websites researching how to get an agent interested in your work (much less a publisher,) you have no idea of how hard a writer has worked for that piece of ‘non art’ you read for enjoyment or learning. Even the formula ones.  And is there no greater sin in the book reading world than to be a profitable, commercial writer? Must all writers be starving, wondering when their next paying six month column gig in a local news rag will come along? Have a look at how much actors, actresses, music stars, reality television stars are commanding for their ‘art’ and see if there isn’t a hint of profiteering in there. And don’t get me started on the whole profiteering of artist’s such as Monet or Van Gogh with jigsaw puzzles, paint by numbers, bags, tea towels and whathaveyou!

All this ranting from reading one innocent article in the Irish newspaper,  The Independent?  Well thank goodness somewhere out there a nation sees writers as artists and worthy of being treasured.  And  phew –    just imagine if I had planned to get up on a soap box and preach!