Wednesday, September 24, 2008

How It Really Works, Vol 2: True Firsthand Art World Stories with the Names Left Out

At the height of the youth-obsessed art craze, I had an undergraduate student....sort of a wiseass, a mediocre painter, but his Mom was a terrific artist, and so he had been exposed to lots of art through the years. At the beginning of his senior year, he started making some really great work... obsessive, idiosyncratic paintings on parts of found furniture. When asked about his new work, he shrugged his shoulders and looked away, saying "It's easy.... you just gotta find a good trick...". His BFA show was a success, he started selling his work to some big local collectors, and the following year, he applied for the coveted $15,000 state art prize and won. I ran into him a year later, and asked about his work, what he was up to, etc., and he told me that he had gone back to selling yachts "because he could make more money".

Another year later, I ran across an artist on the internet who had been doing work for several years that was stunningly similar to my student's.


Blogger JC Bravo said...

this is hilarious!! i also ran into him a while back...and he also told me he had quit making art. but i didnt know he had had so much success prior to his decision to change career. it goes to show you that even someone who was close to stabbing his professor, who was accusing him of stealing a chair that he had used for his paintings, could achieve art world recognition due to good connections. i cant believe he was even allowed to graduate(btw...your to kind in describing his work) =]

10:55 PM  

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