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Doesn’t that sound funny? Nobody says “I’m living a contemporary life” (at least I haven’t heard that phrase). Synonyms for the word ‘contemporary’ are ‘current’, ‘up to date’, ‘present-day’, all words that mean right now, just like life is occurring right now. Now why do I mention contemporary life, or life? Because I want to point out how puzzling the phrase ‘contemporary art’ may sound to those not well versed in the art world. Contemporary art to them sounds like ‘contemporary life’ sounds to me—strange, funny, and possibly a bit confusing. Contemporary art is simply art that is produced at the present point in time, just like ‘contemporary life’ is life that is lived at the present point in time. Directly stated, contemporary art is art and ‘contemporary life’ is life. During my years of appreciating, loving, and creating art (Yes, I’m only 22, but bear with me) I’ve come across many people who scoff at, dislike the idea of, or who don’t understand contemporary art. I believe the term is seen as limiting, possibly a bit intimidating, and it sounds or appears to be exclusive. I know I feel daunted when I’m creating art because I worry whether or not my work will be viewed as old news or belonging in the contemporary bracket. But then I remember that ‘contemporary’ is just a word in front of that which I, and all of us here, love—art. I believe many people have a misconception of what contemporary art is, which therefore can cause potential and future art lovers to turn away from the category all together. I bring up this topic because I think we as supporters, lovers, and artists need to explain away the false impression that some may have about contemporary art. Simply put, as people and artists we aren’t merely creating contemporary art, we’re creating art, plain and simple. Now I understand the term ‘Contemporary Art’ and its purpose trust me. I minored in Art History. But I feel the term belongs in the books, museums, and galleries rather than in everyday conversation or creation of art. We all want the appreciation and support of art to grow, and in order to expand we need more people supporting art. Here at CAGO, contemporary art is our business and that’s not going to change. But I think we should all encourage people to view contemporary art as just art, opening their minds to all art can be without their connotations that are connected to the word ‘contemporary’. I know there are some people who won’t agree with my thoughts on this topic, but in saying all of this – my goal is to open up the art and contemporary art world to everyone, those that are curious, uncertain, who question its validity, or who have a misunderstanding regarding contemporary art. The artists on CAGO create contemporary art, I can create contemporary art, and even a middle-schooler can create contemporary art—the ability is within all of us. Just as we all live life, we can all create art and appreciate art, art that belongs to today, the contemporary.
It is a mistake for a sculptor or a painter to speak or write very often about his job. It releases tension needed for his work. ~Henry Moore Visit us at http://www.contemporaryartgalleryonline.com