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July 2nd, 2020

The high end of the visual Art world is total bullshit. Elite curators, dealers, and critics would have you believe that the Art that they champion is the best work of the current era and of times past. Their role should be as guardians of the highest achievements in visual Art, but instead its about shaping the narrative, controlling the message, and cashing in on a lucrative product. Most valuable or blue chip Art is not considered valuable because of its quality or relevance, instead its considered valuable because the elites who determine its greatness also profit from it. Can you see a conflict here?

The elites who occupy the pinnacle of this cabal control the Art narrative, while they conveniently peddle overrated mediocrity for vast sums to stupid wealthy people who really ought to know better. This unregulated pyramid scheme goes largely unquestioned by the average public, mainly because it represents an affluent world that regular folk can only observe from a distance, and may never aspire to participate in. Sure, as a consumer you can pay $20 to visit an Art Museum in America and gaze upon the perceived magnificence of validated high end Art, but you can never own it.

Honoré Balzac once said that behind every great fortune there is a great crime, or in my opinion, a great deception. This is how it works, the Art industry bigs up the genius narrative of specific anointed artists, both living and dead, turning them into celebrities, then peddles their output for huge sums at high end dealerships and exclusive auction houses. The role of Art museums is to perpetuate the genius narrative that their private dealership colleagues can continue to profit from, so museums can benefit from the loan of a so-called priceless masterpiece, from which the wealthy owner earns a substantial tax cut. In order to justify this lucrative business model it is necessary for these powerful gatekeepers to dismiss all remaining visual artists who have not been anointed & invited to participate in this deception. But the reality is that one can find Art being created by un-anointed artists that is equally as good if not better and more culturally relevant than what has been generated by the sacred cows of the visual art world.

How easily the gatekeepers of the Art world dismiss the 99.99% of remaining artists whom they deliberately ignore, perhaps out of laziness, but more so from maintaining a sense of control that they are unwilling to relinquish.


December 10th, 2019

The high end of the visual Art world is total bullshit. The elites who occupy the pinnacle of this cabal control the Art narrative, so that they can peddle overrated mediocrity for vast sums to stupid wealthy people who really ought to know better. This unregulated pyramid scheme goes largely unquestioned by regular people, mainly because it represents an affluent world that they can only observe from a distance, and never participate in.

Sensitive Skin

August 2nd, 2019

Shay Culligan is an outspoken Irish-born Boston-based visual artist who refuses to participate in the official Art world, though he laughs that he'd also never be invited. Shay's criticisms of Art world elites & their compliant critics have probably ensured his blacklisted status, something he suspects, but cannot prove. His thesis suggests that Art World elites control the Art narrative while championing mediocrity, which they peddle for vast sums to stupid wealthy people while they also dismiss all remaining artists because they don't factor into this elite cabal's lucrative agenda. Bolstered by sycophantic critics the elite Art world mantra is very rarely questioned by a public made up of easily programmable sheep. Shay refuses to sell his own original works, and has turned down some tempting offers since announcing his stubborn edict in 2013. He mocks the perceived notions of genius surrounding those whom he refers to as the overrated sacred cows of (modern) Art history: Picasso, Matisse, Duchamp, Modigliani, Rothko, Basquiat, etc. Shay claims that for centuries the reputations of specific anointed artists are carefully spun and manufactured by industry insiders who care nothing for Art, their main goals being control and personal enrichment. Combative as ever, Shay's dismissal of today's so-called celebrity art stars is equally pronounced: Koons, Emin, Hirst, Katz, Hockney, Scully, and Murillo, each of whom Shay claims to be lacking in technical ability, and teetering on contrived reputations designed to fleece naive collectors. He confesses to harboring genuine respect for skillfull representational painting, which he admits is rarely en vogue, attributing much of its establishment disdain to fear and jealously. Shay respects hard working galleries who market emerging artists to the upwardly mobile middle classes, but its not a route that he plans for himself. Although daunted by being personally shut out of today's Art market bubble, Shay nonetheless declares victory by virtue of the fact that he still creates Art at a prolific rate, the originals of which he often destroys—once they've been photographed—rather than one day allow them to fall into the hands of the high end dealers whom he disparages: "they dismiss me now, but would gladly profit from my legacy in the future." Paranoid, maybe, Shay's audience is social media, that's where his reputation gets tossed around, hence all sorts of feedback both positive and negative, and the occasional royalty for electronic reproductions which he gladly concedes. Originally a painter in oils and acrylics, he practiced boring (his word) realistic portraits and scapes until he took on serigraphy, where he silkscreen printed his photographic collages onto card and canvas, his subject matter hard to pin down. Often a mixture of urban, glamorous, and colorful, the viewer is left with a sense that modern life is busy, exciting, complex, and chaotic. This medium took him to a new level of partial abstraction that had not surfaced in his paintings. Inspired by his photogenic Russian wife and model Marina, the muse who features in much of his work, Shay refuses to explain his narratives, insisting that the viewers "catch up and figure it out for themselves." Now back making portraits in oils again his painterly output in this traditional medium is unrecognizable from his busy silkscreen printed work, but Shay refuses to be drawn into the usual profile where an artist's output, medium, and subject matter must be consistently predictable and recognizable to the viewer. "Catch Up" being his prevailing mantra.