Art and politics are intimately linked.
That statement may seem obvious, but the political can easily be hidden within a work of art, and may take discernment to uncover. If viewed from the correct perspective, every masterpiece has a political subtext.
Renaissance masterpieces commissioned by the Church and royalty were tools of propaganda used to control the minds and hearts of the people. Only a rare few outstanding artists were given the privilege of creating for the Vatican or the elite, and often tucked revolutionary ideas among the folds of satin and the pathos and emotion of Christian art.
Hollow Pursuits, Michael KerbowMany contemporary artists embrace the power of art to not only comment on current political and cultural issues, but also to influence thought and perception through their artwork.
A concept can be communicated through the beautiful, as well as through shock. Often, the beautiful may be even more effective at transferring an idea from the mind of the artist to the viewer. After all, who hasn’t turned away from a work, when that may be the last thing the artist wants?
This is not meant to denigrate those who work via raw emotion or who are compelled to reflect back to us aspects of the ugly that permeate our culture. Each artist has a unique perspective and a unique approach, and may travel through several ‘phases’ during their career. I haven't heard of a single artist who feels complete, or completely satisfied with their process, and who doesn’t have more to say.
Galri Montaj supports the voices of artists, emerging or otherwise, who perceive the world through the apertures of skepticism, outrage, joy, and wonder.
If you haven't yet found your ‘voice’, continue until you do. Our voices change through time and experience. As artists and as human beings, we are never done.
–Lora R Fisher