Yep, all artists are mad, well, at least the good ones it seems. Throughout the history of art there have been many troubled artists; Michelangelo, Mark Rothko, Paul Gaugin, Fransisco Goya, Edvard Munch, Salvador Dalí and, of course, Vincent Van Gogh, to name but a few. There is even a contemporary art gallery at the infamous Bethlem Hospital (Bedlam) in Kent. But linking artistic genius and insanity is a romantic folly - isn't it?
Well, maybe that's the problem. What is sometimes labelled as insanity is often pure genius that is misunderstood by the masses. Okay, there is a tendency to melancholia in the artistic temperament but imagine being surrounded by the proletariat who have no vision or imagination, it's enough to drive you mad!
I often wonder whether other people see the same things as me. Is it lack of observation or do they just not see it as I do? You do need to look beyond the obvious, I am a big advocate of impressionism and expressionism. After all, you want to see what's in the artist's mind, don't you?
It was with expressionism that the notion of the mad artist found its modern incarnation. The pioneers of expressionism were by no means all insane, but enough of them came close enough to keep the idea alive: Van Gogh cutting off his ear and reworking the world in psychotic strokes. And recent images from the Hubble telescope reveal that Van Gogh's visionary work Starry Night, which bears an uncanny resemblance to previously unknown patterns in our solar system, may have been inspired. So, madman or genius?
Food for thought. Next time you see the work of a 'mad' artist remember he may be way ahead of his time and it is 'normal' people that need to open their minds.
Anyway, I have to round up a load of nutters, I mean artists, for our new collection of work for the gallery in 2015. There's some fantastic artwork on its way and I will be drip-feeding you some stunning images for your delectation over the forthcoming weeks. Can't wait!
Right, must dash. Anyone seen my camel?