Aphorisms for Artists by Walter Darby Bannard

Aphorism #41

The art consensus is not a guarantee, it is a convenience.

Art is the flower of a civilization, and our civilization cultivates it vigorously, choosing the best for public collections.

No one agrees with everything that floats to the top, but we do a pretty good job of it, especially with older art. If it is in a museum and in the art history books and has some age to it, that is reasonable evidence that it may be worthwhile as art.

But art does not become art until it is experienced as art, and it is not good art until you find it to be good art. Until then it is just an accumulation of materials, a thing called art waiting to be art.

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