Friday, September 8, 2017

ArtPrize From Both Sides of the Brain

Copyright © Edward Riojas

I realize that not everyone who visits this blog can visit ArtPrize. The art competition that grew up in my backyard is quite unlike any other – whether in the U.S. or any other part of the world. Being a relative newcomer to the global art scene, ArtPrize suffers from growing pains, but already this thing is a giant.

Once upon a time, I created graphics for a local newspaper group, and ArtPrize was my baby. There were times when my interpretations of raw data gave me insights into the event that even ArtPrize staff didn't have. What follows is a brief visual exploration of ArtPrize, ala Riojas style, that gives a hint at the scope of what is still an unknown event to many Americans. For a deeper explanation of ArtPrize, you can read a post from the Art Curmudgeon archives.

Numbers can be boring to artists, so I've superimposed Vincent van Gogh's "The Starry Night" over the history of artist/venue participation to give you a better impression. (See what I did there?)

The slightly-convoluted ArtPrize prize purse evolved when elitists complained about trends in the original public vote, so the event is now bi-polar, with elitist jurors carrying as much weight as the pedestrian public. Johannes Vermeer's "Girl with a Pearl Earring" questions both sides and their respective ideas of "fine" art.

The size of the ArtPrize purse means nothing unless it is compared with other globally-respected art prizes. How appropriate that Gilbert Stuart's unfinished "George Washington" (yes, the one used on U.S. currency) supports the data.

The original boundaries held us captive with more than enough art. Then special interests and deep pockets got in the way. The politics of art can be worse than, um, politics.

Source for all graphics: and The Art Curmudgeon research.

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