Sunday, February 20, 2011

Art and anger

Anger as artistic virtue is short lived and becomes, too often, monotony. The idea that the artist must get himself into a full , frothing lather, burst out of his clothes while his engorged (and enraged) muscles morph to sizes beyond a believable scale is absurd on the face of it; the writer, the poet, the painter, the sculptor, the photographer,  the artist, whatever the medium, would be too intent on screaming "Hulk Smash Puny Critics" rather than focus their energy on the literal and metaphorical canvas in front of them. 
The artist, if nothing else,is that person who occupies themselves with experssing their sense of things in an externalized manner after  the things that they've taken in--a heartbreak, being fired, a wedding, good sex, a death, a disease, a visit from the In Laws--has gestated for a period, has been assimiliated, so to speak, into one's being and the artist can attain equilibriu, for awhile at least, through the  artistic act. 
The experience, that is, becomes the raw material the artist will use after  the rage has subsided and the painter, the poet, the  novelist has had their offended ego return to human proportions. Passion will remain, to be sure, but the anger, well...I would venture that the anger is an impediment and needs to cool to something that one can pick up and examine and , eventually,  use as something that motivates one to make reconfiguations, not commit homicide. This has presented a credibility problem for both aging punkers and wrinkled heavy metalheads who find themself trying to live up to a past decade's reputation with a gasping exaggeration. 
I find Chrissie Hinde attractive because she never lost her sense of humor or irony. Interestingly enough, she didn't market herself as an angry punk woman; the tone is bitter at times, more often bittersweet, and the attitude of her lyrics is that she pushes on toward the goal of making her life a good fit for the reality she's found herself in.