To Kevin Lee –

Hi, I just had to reply to Mr. Moreau’s response ( “Going Postal” 6/5/14) to your column “Artifice” 5/22/14.

Dear Monsieur Moreau!

You seem to have no idea whether we have any artists in the area “providing anything original”.

#1)  There are too few places to display or sell “original” art.

#2)  “Week-end warriors” and “rich housewives” can create art too, along with the starving artists and determined students!

#3)  We are low-key and modest in this town, maybe because of our lower cost of living.

#4)    There is plenty of room for everyone.

That Mobile is a small town with a certain heritage and location, presents the opportunity  for artists to paint crawfish and crab.  There are also a wealth of people with fresh ideas and a love of the arts in general.  There are also the crabs with the closed minds.

What is “original art” anyway?  A colorful penis in the window or Vermeer’s methods of portraying details by tricks and manipulating a bit?  And, what about the Picasso’s and Matisse’s who copied each other and learned from the Masters?

Art is a continuum.  It isn’t just about the art we produce now as individuals or support as a community.  Art is the expression of nature from within and without.   If a penis is your “art” then so be it, whatever the price tag.

What I think Mobile needs is not necessarily more giant, colorful male appendages in the windows downtown but a true immersion in the arts in our schools, in our public venues, in our lives. Make art and culture move up to where it belongs, nudes included, of course. Elevate our city’s perception of itself and display it everywhere.  Have the whole community involved, not just a chosen few who critique with prejudice.

We have a thriving Arts Council who is the backbone of our Art Community.  A Community of talent, perhaps not unleashed as yet.  We have the Center for the Living Arts.  We have an emerging Mobile Museum of Art  ( Not a scary place to go!!)  who are active in educating the area school children as well opportunity for regional artists to exhibit there.  (We locals are regional too.)

Yes, we don’t have enough venues and, most of all, we don’t have a public that knows enough or believe it is safe enough to come downtown, particularly at night.

So….What is next?  Not what has been!  Not what we can’t do!!!   It is easy to state the problems!  Let’s begin the dialogue  about what we are going to do about it all!!! Our city’s vibrancy and well being will depend on it, I believe.

Merci,
Gail Bramer