One A Day – 180


A fellow reading a book, a group of men having a conversation, and a couple sharing a few moments over cups of ice cream under the Portales.

  • Centro Histórico, Morelia, Michoacán, México
  • August 5, 2013
  • Copyright, all rights reserved

Is it art? In my opinion, no. It is just a gentle recording of what we see on a summer Monday evening in Morela. I do have pieces I consider artistic from the same photo walk. But you are welcome to disagree. Art is in the eyes of the beholder.

I saw several news releases about Jeff Bezo’s purchase of the Washington Post yesterday. In comparison, the announcement that Amazon is now listing Fine Art Beta under Home, Garden and Tools is a barely noticed footnote. Pay attention to the beta behind the title, as if to say, “Well, we’re not sure Fine Art has a place in the public market after all…”

I don’t know if the listings are showing something about the state of the international art market or Amazon, but they are interesting.  A signed Dali litho goes for less than a photo titled, “At 3:37 a boy was born..” Granted, the Dali litho is not one of his best known or, depending on your point of view, not one of his best pieces. I do accept that the photo of a plastic doll taken through the plastic lens of a lomo-style art camera is an artistic work. But, it is equally true that the “in room” view Amazon offers of each is about as poor a comparison tool as I can imagine. A consumer is going to decide to spend over $1,000 on art based on scale and appearance in a bland, minimal “set?”  Oh well…  Never mind the relative worth of either work to me – this is Warhol’s soup cans coming back to haunt the art world. Anything as ART. Total democratization without moderation. “Would you prefer a Dali or a dishwasher today? We don’t install or provide input on which might be better for you.”

It will be interesting to see how it works out. Will a hazy 15-inch print of a pile of wine bottles get four star customer reviews? Will Myrtle in Syracuse tell us how she redecorated her kitchen for this piece only to find when it arrived it was not the same color as she saw on her computer monitor?

We will see. Until then, if you want a print of one of my pieces, let me know personally. I don’t think I’ll be rushing to join the Amazon Fine Art listing soon, but who knows?