Response to "Art Versus the Academy:
An Email Debate"
(Pub'd in C.L., Vol. 20, No. 2)
Compiled by Curt Barnes
Curt Barnes Page 1

No art worthy of the name is intelligible to persons of shallow understanding who have not mastered it. No doubt even the most untalented and ignorant person may be pleased by closely related verses and a banal style, but it is inconceivable that anyone only vaguely familiar with the art could understand poetry of an elevated and profoundly beautiful nature.

                          -A shinkei, quoted by Donald Keene

The growth of populations has in no way increased the amount [of art]; it has merely increased the adeptness with which substitutes can be produced and packaged.                          -Raymond Chandler

Popular culture: "the symbolic representation of what people already believe."
                         -David Foster Wallace

Democracy with its semi-civilization sincerely cheri-shes junk. The artist's power should be spiritual. But the power of the majority is material. When these worlds meet occasionally, it is pure coincidence.
                                                  -Paul Klee

How does one become mediocre? By compromising, by making concessions, today in this matter, to-morrow in another, according to the dictates of the world, by never contradicting the world and by always following public opinion.
                                                  - Vincent Van Gogh

Humanity is not served by making art compre-hensible to everybody. In art the search for a content which is collectively understandable is false.
                                                  -Piet Mondrian