Terry Smith Paragraphs

Being in a post historical time makes it difficult to define contemporary art. Terry Smith’s article, “What is Contemporary Art,” discusses various aspects of globalization, population growth, cultural influence, and the experience of artists evolving in a post historical era. Population, industrial, and technological growth attribute to more art being produced than ever before in more diverse aspects of medium, content, and location. The widespread access to information and images via the internet, television, news & entertainment, advertising, print media, ect… define Smith’s notion of the image economy he refers to as the “iconomy.” This iconomy, as an assemblage of past and present appropriations, directly influences the contemporary artist.

Smith describes contemporary art as an original form of art that gives expression towards contemporary thought. However, no qualities of any form of contemporary creation are shared by a sufficient number of works to define a “contemporary style.” This greatly differs from regressive forms of tradition artistic representation. As new generations bloom and technology advances the aesthetic of globalization changes the way humans think and interact. Survival is focused less on the group but more on the individual. Artistic success relies on publicity and artists must be familiar with contemporary affairs to spark attention. The art of the “spectacle” plays a role in the aesthetic excess of the contemporary. Contemporary art deals with “…interactive potentialities of various material media, virtual communicative networks, and open ended modes of tangible connectivity, influenced by present thought and environment.

As a contemporary artist, surrounded by a technological progressive society, its hard to be satisfied with traditional techniques of creation. With such a wide variety of information available at our fingertips, an image no longer satisfies the technologically influenced mind. In such an industrial era, art is a dying breed of organic practice and product. As I painter I can appreciate the skill, time, and thought that goes into a painting. I love painting and although the practice is still renowned today, contemporary art calls for ideas and processes that are beyond a two-demensional representation. With modern tools and technology available to vast populations the ideas for contemporarily aesthetic, engaging, interactive, and functional art are waiting to be produced.

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