Pop Culture Princess

Pop Culture Princess
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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

TV's take on art can be a real piece of work

With another new episode of Bravo's latest reality competition series,Work of Art:The Next Great Artist,due to air tonight,some of my thoughts turn to the general perception of that creative realm as it's usually depicted on fictional TV.

Most of the time,art appreciation is put up as a dividing line between characters to show the wide gap of social and/or educational status that can stand in their way of their finding a happy medium in which they can both take pleasure in the same thing. Sometimes,it's a matter of different generations simply clashing with one another over how they see the world in general.

The best method of expressing this diversity of opinion is through humor and with that in mind,let's take a stroll into this video galley of art related clips from TV shows past and see if their comic critiques still hold up in the present:

Portrait of the artist and a young woman: On a memorable episode of All in the Family,Gloria was asked by an artist friend of Michael's to be the subject of his next painting as a nude model.

While Mike thought it was a real compliment(at first,anyway),Archie was worried about what would happen to their marriage. In a weird way,Archie was trying to look out for Mike,who he delighted in insulting and arguing with on a daily basis. Funny how art can bring out the worst as well as the best in people when least expected:

Getting a real education: A reoccurring theme on Golden Girls was the ladies' increasing their knowledge of art,with Blanche assuming she knew the most due to her job at a local museum. However,even she learned a harsh lesson from a well renowned painter with the personality of a pit bull who unleashed his snobbery at them during a showing of his work:

It's the thought that counts: A favorite running gag on Fraiser was the range of taste between the Crane boys and their down to earth dad.

Martin's often kitschy preferences for mainstream entertainment and franchise restaurants(not to mention the over the top Christmas decor that Fraiser and Niles strove to tolerate) were at times more heartfelt than the high end items his sons acquired as symbols of their upper class status.

As a gesture of good will,Martin bought Fraiser a painting that he mistakenly thought he would like. To be fair,Fraiser did praise it,mainly as a way of charming his way into getting a good table at a fancy restaurant,which came back to bite him right sharply indeed:

Taking a tongue in cheek tour: One of the many cultural reference points on Gilmore Girls was art,best highlighted on the episode where Stars Hollow got to host a Festival of Living Art that had the gang seated at The Last Supper fighting with each other while Lorelai feared that she was doomed to flinch on stage.

Even with their vast appreciation of the classics,works of art were fair game for mockery,particular at inopportune moments by Lorelai as a way of mellowing out Rory(plus,she was right;that guy's name does sound like space alien language):

Whether or not Work of Art will serve to reinforce those notions of the art world as being more suited to snobs or broaden it's appeal to include folks from all walks of life is yet to be seen. However,the general idea of keeping one's mind open to new
experiences and perceptions is something that everyone can agree on.

It's also good to note that making assumptions about the quality of a piece due to where it is can make you penny foolish and the gallery owner pound wise at your expense. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder but sometimes the price tag doesn't have to be so high:

1 comment:

Ladytink_534 said...

I just don't understand some "art" very well. There's an episode on the Simpson's from when I was a kid that pretty much sums it all up for me with Homer's very odd creation.