The idea of the artist has changed some over the years. Now, when we hear somebody talking about an artist on television or radio, most times they’re talking about singers or members of bands that have recording contracts or sometimes other celebrities. I suppose Pop Art predicted this, but the whole business crept up on us. First came the term recording artists. Then later the recording part was dropped.
Not only are singers and other celebs all artists, there are also sandwich artists, coffee-brewing artists and so on. There are lots of artists in the service industries. Really, everybody is an artist. OK, why not.
There is currently an ad campaign here in Toronto for some kind of theatrical production happening in the city, a spectacle involving both people and horses. In the ads, they tell us we can come to see two and four-legged artists. That’s right friends. Horses are artists too. Maybe the show is great. I don’t know. Maybe the horses really are artists.
I like to make paintings. I’ve been doing it for many years. From time to time, I exhibit them. Occasionally I even sell one. From now on though, if asked if I’m an artist, I think the only response left is, “no, I’m a painter.”