Sunday, October 2, 2011

ArtPrize and my Battle Against Cynicism

Well, I've given the Top 10 announcement some time to sink in—and this is not meant as a criticism, rather a frustrated observation—I believe that ArtPrize has lost it's heart and soul. While I maintain that the event has been manipulated and merchandised, and that public opinion threatens to make GR look silly and tasteless, I still spent the afternoon on the streets of our city in search of art. And I found lots.

The art is out there, and so are the people. I think it just takes time for people to get past the centrally located, larger than life bits, and for word of mouth to spread about the gems hidden in church basements and up freaky freight elevators. Round One isn't long for rumor and buzz to take root, so it's all about location, location, location.

Today I heard a lot of "If this was in the GRAM, it'd be in the top ten instead of _______ ". And these comments were probably correct. The way the event works now, (certain) Venues essentially choose the winners before the public get a vote, simply by selecting them to be in their facility.
Needlesstosay, I'm insanely disappointed with this years Top Ten. Slightly embarrassed even, and concerned what it'll do to the city's and event's reputations. But rather than state all the reasons I hate the Top Ten, I've decided to list ten pieces I really did like— maybe they aren't worth a quarter of a million dollars, but they make the event worthwhile.

I believe that the ArtPrize Foundation is aware of the flaws and challenges taking over the event, and that they are working to remedy them. I hope the event continues in the future in some fashion, and I look forward to seeing what changes they make.
Unfortunately though, I think Jesus is going to win this one.

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