An Artwork as Documentation of an Artist’s Self-Consciousness
Problem 1. Is
an artist a profession? It is obvious that today an artist less and
less needs academic education. An artists technical skills increasingly
depend on their concrete use. Their demand is determined by the environment,
in which a concrete idea can be put into life in the most efficient
way. The second important circumstance is the disappearance of subjective
originality. Practically there is no difference between the work of
a professional programmer and an academic painter, if the artist who
lacks these skills needs them to realize his idea.
Problem 2. Is the art market an economic concept? The circle,
in which an artwork as a commodity is turning, is eternal and stable.
Today the inability to sell ones work to the state/institution/collector
is not considered an advantage. An artist practically loses a possibility
to legitimise his activity, if he does not succeed in placing his production
in the existing art market. Today an artist is forced to engage himself
not only in producing an artwork, but also in spreading it: he must
know how to present the idea of his work and have some skills of filling
in various forms to apply for funding, he must also have some knowledge
of PR and the principles of work with possible sponsors. It is not enough
for an artist to wait till society notices him. Quite often an artist
can secure himself a position on the art market.
Problem 3. Is self-consciousness an urgent concept in the market
conditions? We should reconcile ourselves with a conclusion that self-consciousness
is a concept not important for an artist. Self-consciousness is a mere
technical term relevant to an artists career rather than to those
who appreciate his works. Self-consciousness should be understood as
a rational explanation of the situation mentioned above in order to
take correct actions enabling the artist to become a recognized participant
of the art market, and his works a valuable commodity.
Conclusions. Future prospects. Firstly, the changes of the definition
of an artist and the space of an artwork are not negative. These changes
do not hinder the existence of interesting, urgent etc. art. Just sometimes
it is useful to know the practical conditions of its existence, which
would create a more direct way towards the meanings that can otherwise
remain inaccessible. Secondly, an efficient way-out does exist, but
it is not easily reached. The existence of the art market basically
depends on the general condition of a consumer society. Thus the movements
of an art worker looking for a way-out will be similar to the actions
of one who tries to humanize the capitalist society in general.