Thursday, October 7, 2010

AA Bronson on Art & Social Justice

Shelley Aarons & Terence Koh at AA Bronson's Lecture

I went to the AA Bronson Lecture last night at Union Theological Seminary> AA delivered a paper that he had written for a talk he had given in Montreal earlier this year on the convergence of Art and Religion. In his usual, fascinating way Bronson talked around the subject, drawing no conclusions except maybe that some religions are more fashionable than others and that the impetus to be an artist is more a calling than anything else, much like that those who go into the seminary. Bronson described the way he was drawn to the seminary by using the metaphor of the cane that draws a performer off the stage in a vaudeville skit, seemed logical to me. Many of the questions were on the order of "Why did an artist decide to enter the seminary". Bronson's answer was the same one he used often throughout the night"I don't know" and I think that's a great answer!

Often, we artists find we are compelled to things that "Don't make any sense" yet we feel compelled to do them. When I started making portraits a few years ago I had no idea why, it may have had something to do with thinking about someone who was far away but that only vaguely explained it, so when people asked me why I was doing it, I usually said" I don't know, but it will all make sense in my retrospective" ...and maybe it will, I don't know...

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