The Art in Everything

Honestly 50SPA, I didn’t think you had it in you.

A few bursts through the webosphere this week have got me thinking about Art.
With a capital A.

The type that you think you enjoy, but in your heart of hearts you feel like you might not “get.”

Or is that just me?

My former abode in Jamaica Plain, lovingly nicknamed 50SPA, is full of many things – beer, friendship, pants-off-dance-offs – but not, to my knowledge, classical musicians in full performance mode.

All that changed recently when my ‘gansett-swilling, wine-box loving pals hosted Groupmuse in the bonus room.


While I didn’t get to take in the performance myself, it looks like a blast. As the founder says, “The goal of Groupmuse is to revitalize the role of classical music in contemporary society by emphasizing and accentuating its inherently social nature,” Bodkin said. “And to create lots of legitimately fun, stimulating, and enriching opportunities to encourage folks to expand their minds and their social circles.”

Another new launch in the YouTube world this week clicked with this very idea of experimental art. The Art Assignment is a PBS-funded conversation attempting to get people to think about and create art in their lives.

The first episode did just that by presenting two artists whose “performance” (if it can be called that) is to meet in the exact middle of two locations. After deciding on the location, they cannot communicate in any way. The only rule: don’t be late.

As prompted by the video: then, what is art?

Who decides what are the proper forms, locations, performances, or acts of “Art”? In a post-post-modern world, if art is everything, then is it nothing?

Go with me here: I love pushing on boundaries. I love the very act of creation. But I also value distinctiveness and purpose. And maybe that’s it: the intention.

I mean, I can go outside dressed in a gigantic lobster costume and hack down a tree in front of Key Bank, but I don’t have a good reason for that action (or do I?).

Even if the purpose is to prove that there is no purpose, I still think of art as somehow based on the creator’s intent – no matter how it’s seen, processed or accepted by the public (if it’s ever seen at all).

All I can say for the Groupmuse musicians, however, is that I hope Tim bought toilet paper.


The Art of the Everyday – February 24: Art Art Everywhere! And not a drop to drink.


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