Frasier HortonWednesday, November 10, 2021
According to Oxford Languages, art is the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting or sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power. Repeat that last part, beauty or emotional power. Remember this as you read along.
If you’ve ever walked down the art-adorned upstairs hallway, you may have seen the painting by Herbert Creecy with the green background and “amazing” assortments of doodles. Let me be frank, that is the worst painting I’ve ever seen in my entire life. I mean honestly, what is there to interpret? What beauty or emotional power am I supposed to feel? I can’t even comprehend what’s happening; I know this is abstract art, but at least put some effort into it. I think today the phrase “so easy a toddler could do it” is used way too loosely, but wow, after researching, I discovered that an actual artist, not a toddler, painted this painting. I am in the same amount of shock as you. And get this, Altamont accepted it as a donation. This 6-by-6 foot monstrosity of “creative engineering” is and will always be the thing I dislike the most about Altamont. Literally. Given the choice between a white cinderblock hallway or this preschooler’s Mona Lisa, I would go with cinderblock 99 times out of 100. Make that 100 times out of 100.
Now don’t get me wrong, a lot of the art displayed is cool. Like the bottom floor has some amazing art, and let me be clear: Altamont did not miss. Every single picture down there is just so cool. The art creates an environment that makes you feel like a student of Altamont. And let me reiterate, most of the paintings displayed show the heritage that Altamont prides itself on, but some of them are just straight up finger-paintings.
Now back to that one painting. Imagine the art supplies used to make that "art." There are at least 20 different colors on that piece and none of them strike up any semblance of beauty or emotional power. The best part is that the painting is blocked from view by a cement pillar, which may have been intentional, if you catch my drift. I encourage you to try and find it, just so you can experience the feeling of true despair and disappointment that I feel whenever I see it.
The only reason I’m even going after it is for the good of Altamont. Imagine the beautiful art we can hang in it's place, maybe a mural or a sculpture. Even the paint on the wall itself is way better than what we have now. Call me a hater, call me an art critic, but there is no beauty in that painting. Of course, you’re welcome to your own opinion, but this is mine, and I’m pretty sure I’m right.