My election notes. E-Day – 37

by Pseud O'Nym


If the news that Cornelia Parker is to be the official election artist didn’t take you by surprise, then the chances are that you knew we have we had one for the last five general elections. However I had been wholly unaware of this – like most people I’d wager – and this raises a whole slew of questions; namely why in the name of sanity do we need one and if – IF – we do, then why does she need to be paid £20,000?

The BBC stated;

 She will observe the election campaign, which culminates in the vote on 8 June, and produce a piece in response.

The official election artist is chosen by the Speaker’s Advisory Committee on Works of Art, and Parker will have to complete the piece by early September.

However, as expected The Guardian was suitably respectful of this news, clearly thinking it to be A VERY GOOD THING INDEED and not as massive insult from self-proclaimed cultural commissars who pronounce upon whether art is indeed art and not just random bits of stuff given a profound meaning to justify it’s expensive price?

I mean when does a limerick become a poem? When does a child’s finger painting become abstract expressionism? And why, when I think of abstract art so I always think of the following quote . “Abstract art is the product of the untalented, sold by the unprincipled to the utterly bewildered.” Is really all you need copious amounts of elegant chin stroking flannel to convince people that what you produce has meaning?  And do artists visit this site when they can’t think of of seemingly profound nonsense?

Carmella Parker is, the Guardian claims in its puff piece on her appointment, ‘a conceptual artist’? So will the work she produces in response to the election be a room full of thousands of small helium balloons to represent the potentially inflammable nature of words/ Or the ephemeral nature of meaning? Given that once had the army blow up a shed in order for her to make some art, that doesn’t seem too implausible.

Or just a cavernous white room with nothing in it except for a small blower pumping hot air into it?