Wednesday, May 28, 2003


From: Jenny Choi
To: Arye Dworken
Date May 27, 2003 6:07PM
Subject: happybirthdaywhenandwherearewehavingdinner?

Ok, down to bizness. first of all. it's contemporary art you're bashing. not modern. get it right. unless you want to bash picasso or cezanne, then that's a different story...

second. why did you go to the dia beacon. the state of contemporary art is everywhere. you could have gone to chelsea or soho or queens to realize what youre now realizing. and why are you making this realization now? this conceptual movement has been going on for thirty plus years. someone hasn't been keeping up.

I'm trying to give you the benefit of the doubt that you are indeed educated about art, but what would you say if someone, someone who knew a fraction, a quarter of what you know about music, bashed all contemporary music. what if this person listened to five of your favorite current albums once over and said, oh it's garbage. it's just noise and no melody. rock musicians are only rock musicians because of their image. I think you ought to think how much you actually know about these artists before you judge them. THEM. 'them' being a general term, right? there is quite a lot about the contemporary art world that I am clueless about, but I accept that there are creative realms out there that I need to be more educated about before I judge them. think about how much you really know about something, before you sweepingly judge an artist as creating something 'forced' or 'uninspired'. I'm not saying you can't have an opinion, I just cant help but question how educated an opinion it is.

what do you think about kasimir malevich (russian guy from 50s who did plain red squares on a canvas) or piet mondrian (dutch guy from 40s who did white canvas, red, black, yellow lines)? do you think they're bull**** too? are you saying it has to look complex to be art? it has to look like there's skill involved to be art? heres my art lesson for the day: these guys (among others) were trained as serious painters and they started their careers making paintings that actually resembled things: trees, lakes, landscapes,
seascapes. then one day, they decided to transcend representational art. their paintings no longer looked like trees or lakes. people were outraged. it changed the face of art as we know it today. do you think they did it simply to shock? these artists felt that they wanted to portray real things (trees, lakes, etc) the way they truly see them, not just with their eyes. it was a kind of spiritual representation and so much more personal. subsequently, their audience then had wide open space to interpret these paintings the way they saw fit. what did it all mean??? here we have: the birth of modern art. nonrepresentational art. abstract art. believe me. it's all coming from the same vein. sometimes you extract great meaning just
looking at it. and sometimes you just don't get it. but who's to say that the artist is a fool if his audience doesn't get it? who's to say that the artist is uninspired???

in yr interpretation of AW, you don't see that he was actually making a very clear point. you see a grotesque car crash and then you see it again, and again, and again, multiplied nice and neat into a grid. and what happens then? what happens when something completely revolting is repeated over and over again. well, suddenly, it's not grotesque anymore. what I think? I think it's brilliant. revolutionary for its time. (ps: he's from pittsburgh)

or better yet. jackson pollock! ya think he's bull**** too? he's really no different from mr. white canvas with disparate brushstrokes. go ahead. say it. they're both full o' ****.

but what we're really talking about is: WHAT REALLY DEFINES ART??? you and I certainly have differing opinions about that.

educate yourself before you judge. think before you generalize.

ok really now, I cant be having these crazy long debates while at work. I gots to get back to my job now. to be continued... or we can just end it now. I don't mind. actually, im sure you want to respond. I would too.

By the way, you're an absolutely amazing person and I worship you.



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