I don't mean the art journalists, who do a great job covering our exhibits, writing our biography, and who can be proud to do a real information job.
No, I mean the "art critics". Those who think they can tell who is good and who is not, and always give their opinion even if nobody cares about what they think.
Why, one day, these people who have never been able to create even one little artwork, decide to become an art critic, is one of the most unsolved mystery of the human nature. Lots of famous international scientists considered that non sense, and they came out with only one possible explanation : a syndrome called G.I.B.S.E. (Genetic imbalance between skills and ego) !
Even if I have to admit that it is usually quite fun to listen to them theorizing about our work, describing it with words more appropriated in a psychology book than in an art gallery, and looking for a meaning our sick brain of artist could have unconsciously hidden; we shouldn't forget something critical : they can be DANGEROUS !
Yes, with some words published in a newspaper, they can built or ruin someone career, depending on their mood that day.
That's why, a long time ago, a French Artist, named Roland Dorgelès, tired of being considered as a bad painter, by the snobbish Parisian Art Critics, had a strange idea :
March 8, 1910, Roland Dorgelès borrows, Lolo, a very friendly Donkey, owned by Frédéric Gérard , called " the father Frédé ", who was the keeper of a cabaret in "Montmartre", le Lapin Agile. (Montmartre is the Parisian quarter, where lots of painters and artists leaved and still leaves, even now) .
In the presence of a bailiff , Maitre Brionne, Dorgelès commissioned a painting by Lolo the donkey on whose tail was attached a brush. Whenever they gave the donkey a carrot it frantically wagged his tail, applying paint on canvas.
Since, 1884, an art exhibition, named "Salon des Independants", takes place every year in Paris, and aims to bring together the works of all artists claiming a degree of independence in their art. So, in 1910, in room 22 of the "Salon des Independants", the public , the critics and the press discovered a artwork (painting) entitled "And the sun fell asleep on the Adriatic", awarded to a young Italian painter whom nobody has ever heard : Joachim Raphael Boronali. The Journalists and art critics promptly renamed this painting " Sunset on Adriatic" .
A manifest, written by this unknown but intriguing Italian Artist, in which he explained his new art movement. , was made available to the press and especially the art critics.
The document has made this Artist even more intriguing and sharpened the curiosity of everybody.
The content of this document was approximately like that :
"Oh! Excessive great painters, my brothers. Oh! brushes renovators. Let's break those archaic palette and let's create the principles of tomorrow's painting. Our formula will be the excessivism. Excess in art is a force. The sun is never too ardent, the sky never too green, and the sea too red. Make place to the genius of glare! Let's devastate museums, and trample on routines. Let's make a bonfire with the masterpieces. Don't let us be moved by the yelping of the skinned ferret who are dying under the dome.... lets live scarlet and purple! All our streams of blood to recolor faded auroras! Warm up the art in the embrace of our smoking arm!"
BIZARRE ! Isn't it?
So, after that exhibition, everybody wanted to meet this new mysterious Italian Artist, and especially the journalists and art critics, praising unanimously his incredible talent.
But, the painter stayed hidden during several weeks!
And Finally, the Director of a famous French Newspaper, "l'illustration", was visited by Dorgeles, and his best friend ...Lolo, the Donkey!
Dorgelès stated that the artwork, called "And the sun fell asleep on the Adriatic" was just a hoax, and brought a certificate from the bailiff to prove it . He revealed that the painter was Lolo the donkey, and also showed a picture of the donkey on whose tail was set a brush that applied color on the famous canvas. Dorgelès noted the Director, that the name "Boronali" is an anagram of Aliboron, the name of Buridan's donkey which finally died, after hesitating between food and water, unable to make a decision!
Dorgelès explained his motivation like that: "Just to show to the simpletons, the vains and incapables who clutter most of the art shows, that according to them, the work of a donkey , brushed with its tail is not misplaced in an great art exhibit, sharing the space with "real" art works! "
The revelations, published by this famous newspaper, generated an earthquake in the artistic world.
Thanks to Dorgeles, and above all, Lolo's "talent", these famous Art critics, who thought they could decide who deserve to be successful, and who should stay unknown, enjoyed some of the treatments they subjected so many artists!
And, as you can see on the picture, this painting was a really beautiful "artwork", very modern, especially in 1910!
So, since that day, I hope they learned their lesson : NOBODY CAN JUDGE ART!
Art is art, only in the eye of the one who's watching it. The emotions we feel, in front of an artwork, are different for each of us. And, even if you don't like it, it's still art!!!!
Thanks god, this kind of people, whose only talent is to become famous at the expense of hard working artists, is an endangered specie. and the only one we will not miss!
Fortunately, now, most of them have been replaced by real art journalists, skilled, and passionate. But my friends artists, keep your eyes open, some of them are still haunting our receptions. And if you see one of them...just remember Lolo's story, and IGNORE HIM.
He need's you to be important...you don't!
The painter and sculptor André Maillos bought that canvas for 20 louis (400 gold francs , equivalent to € 3,500 in 2013 ) . Dorgelès reverse the money to the "orphanage of Arts" . In 1953 , the art collector Paul Bédu bought the painting. Since it is exposed to the cultural space Paul Bédu at Milly la Forêt (near Paris)..
According to writer Robert Bruce, after the death of "father Frede" , Lolo's owner, the donkey was placed in another Family in Normandy. Sadly, Lolo was found drowned in a pond. The people who knew the donkey thought that Lolo commited suicide, unable to bear the loss of his loving owner.