The lobby of the Sheraton Meadowlands was a buzz last night as the Rolling Stones were playing at the Meadowlands. Lots of talk about parking and shuttlebuses. From what I overheard, it's quite a scene...not really about music but more about the thrill of logistics. There were lots of yellow haired grandmothers and grandfathers with matching clothes getting ready to rock out with the stones. Funny times...For me the beacon of the Sheraton and their promise of soft beds had me planning my sleep.
However, I did start (not silly start, but seriously start) one of the papers for Syracuse's Aesthetics course. I will be using Susan Sontag's "Against Interpretation" essay as my starting point. Take a look. Her writing is succinct, her concepts are tangible and discussable unlike that freakin' Clement Greenberg who is mired in dense omphalos--navel gazing and assumes the reader is right with him. I am a pretty dull bird who reads a lot, but with Greenberg, I really just want to put the book down. I agree with Sontag when it comes to discussions of aesthetics and "smarty pants"critics and curators--just move on. Let the work speak for itself. If the content means something to the viewer then, so be it. If the viewer just sees a beautiful image, so be it. Why does the visual world need an umpire to make the calls on beauty and it's value? Why does the artist need an intercessor to explain meaning when "what you see is what you get" (WYSIWYG)? No cultural intrepration, no contextural interpretation, no explanation that the artist had braces when he was 11 years old and has been drawing gleaming gums on his figures in direct response to that experience. From my limited perch, the critics should get some real jobs/. Like writing good books middle schoolers would like to read.
I now will step down from my soapbox.
Cardinal is another in the holiday/non-holiday ideas.