Provisional Notes on Art Brut.

Posted on: March 2nd, 2016 by admin

by Erica Spriggs

Art brut, also known as outsider art, is not merely an expression of “madness.” It goes beyond the constructs of language into a deeper realm of consciousness. It disobeys the formula of lines, color, and composition; it becomes itself as it deconstructs itself, as the audience attempts to find a reference that can name what they are seeing. For some brut artists, it is a process not of breakdown but of breakthrough.

According to Jean Dubuffet, author of “L’art brut préféré aux arts culturels,” art brut is “executed by people untouched by artistic culture . . . so that their authors draw everything (subjects, choice of materials employed, means of transposition, rhythms, ways of writing, etc.) from their own depths, not from clichés of classical art or art that is fashionable.” Jean Dubuffet recognized the merits of “madness” in art and invented the term “brut” by presenting his own collection to solidify its right to the creative landscape.

As the artist enters a state of expression, or divided consciousness, he/she turns over a new language that comes not only from their carnal selves, but from a place “unhinged,” free from the influence of societal mores.

Among other things, art brut asks you to challenge your comprehension of what art means, and how meaning is structured through pattern or anti-pattern.

The cathedral of the brut artist’s mind has not been traversed, trespassed, stomped on by outsiders attempting to understand how art works, why it works, or if it can be replicated. Brut artists use whatever materials that are available in their surroundings: toothpaste, food, bodily fluids; such materials add to the vibrancy of their renderings and the fantasy of a boundless imagination.

Art brut celebrates the ability of our heart’s mind to speak the language of chaos, to give it purchase in the physical world, where the internal structures tend to be unspoiled, remain wild, and are able to connect with our own divided consciousness.

Art brut, also known as outsider art, is not merely an expression of “madness.” It goes beyond the constructs of language into a deeper realm of consciousness. It disobeys the formula of lines, color, and composition; it becomes itself as it deconstructs itself, as the audience attempts to find a reference that can name what they are seeing. For some brut artists, it is a process not of breakdown but of breakthrough.

According to Jean Dubuffet, author of “L’art brut préféré aux arts culturels,” art brut is “executed by people untouched by artistic culture . . . so that their authors draw everything (subjects, choice of materials employed, means of transposition, rhythms, ways of writing, etc.) from their own depths, not from clichés of classical art or art that is fashionable.” Jean Dubuffet recognized the merits of “madness” in art and invented the term “brut” by presenting his own collection to solidify its right to the creative landscape.

As the artist enters a state of expression, or divided consciousness, he/she turns over a new language that comes not only from their carnal selves, but from a place “unhinged,” free from the influence of societal mores.

Among other things, art brut asks you to challenge your comprehension of what art means, and how meaning is structured through pattern or anti-pattern.

The cathedral of the brut artist’s mind has not been traversed, trespassed, stomped on by outsiders attempting to understand how art works, why it works, or if it can be replicated. Brut artists use whatever materials that are available in their surroundings: toothpaste, food, bodily fluids; such materials add to the vibrancy of their renderings and the fantasy of a boundless imagination.

Art brut celebrates the ability of our heart’s mind to speak the language of chaos, to give it purchase in the physical world, where the internal structures tend to be unspoiled, remain wild, and are able to connect with our own divided consciousness.

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