What is a Future Without Art? Hopefully not One with Robots
“Art? You can’t make money doing that.” I’m sure you’ve heard that before. It’s a common belief in American society that we can’t make a living doing our art – or at least not a very good living. The worst part? We pass it down to the young artists of tomorrow.
I showed up at my kindergarten career day as an artist (I had a cute little easel and everything). You know what my four-year-old classmates said to me? An artist isn’t a real job. A firefighter, a policeman, a doctor…those are real jobs. I was baffled. What the heck were those dorks talking about?? Of course an artist is a real job!
The best part about our school system is that eventually, I forgot that I had even ever wanted to be a painter. There are kids out there today who actually BELIEVE that it’s not an option to pursue their art seriously. Now I’m not talking about just the kids who go off to music schools and acting schools and art schools. I’m talking about the everyday kid who has butt loads of talent and doesn’t know it. I’m talking about the kid who has dreams but doesn’t believe they have what it takes to get there. I’m talking about the kid we torture with mundane useless work and expect him or her to perform at their best.
We take away their art, and what do they have? What do WE have? What does society have? Robots. We say the youth is our future, but what is a future without art? What is a world without books, drawings and paintings, TV shows, movies, plays, and music? Society doesn’t think twice about labeling artist as “not a real job”. So what does that mean? Does that mean art is only for the rich? J.K. Rowling was at her lowest emotionally and financially when she started the Harry Potter series. Does that mean art is only for the special, talented ones? Then explain some of the less than worthy (a.k.a crap) in mainstream art nowadays.
We’re taught from a young age that the value of money far outweighs the value of creativity. Sure, we need money to live. Can’t argue that point. But what kind of a life are we living?
Tanya Marcy loves to work with emerging and independent artists to market their projects and reach their ideal audience. She blogs at stickTnotes, where she shares her ideas about being a creative artist in today’s changing world. You can find her own art at deviantART and sample her writing at Figment