The most overused term for art these days has got to be “Relevant.”  It’s not that its necessarily a bad term, but does anyone really know what the hell that means?

rel·e·vant

adj \ˈre-lə-vənt\

Definition of RELEVANT

1
a : having significant and demonstrable bearing on the matter at hand b : affording evidence tending to prove or disprove the matter at issue or under discussion <relevant testimony> c : having social relevance
rel·e·vant·ly adverb

What does relevance have to do with art?  Is it supposed to mean that a particular work matters, that it is practical, useful, mystical?  Or does it mean an artists style is fitting?  When I hear it I think of trendy.  This artists work is trendy — there for the galleries show it, and then it sells and more mother fuckers want to buy it? 

Artwork can not be relevant if it is not well known, so that means it has to be popular.  Sheppard Fairy would be relevant– I would not be?  My art matters less than his– so does yours probably.  I take issue with that.  I think all our works are relevant. We have to stop buying into this idea that accolades and others opinions are what makes our works.  We need to have belief in our own work.  We need to make good work.  Work that we are excited about. Pieces that are exhilarating to make.  You know what I mean– its the kind of idea that gets you started on a piece of art at 10 at night and you just keep going.

When an artist is excited about their work, it shows.  My professor once told me that brushstrokes never lie– and you know what– I believe him.

S

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