The picture sale of Mouseion
What decides the proprietary value of a picture, beauty or story? These two are the sources of all arts: the former purifies individual art, and the latter fuses multiple fields of art. It is a very difficult task for us to recognize that what is beautiful is beautiful, and build a public consensus that it is beautiful. On the other hand, it is comparatively easy that some story is acknowledged as a real story, because it is comprehended with internal experience of a lot of people.
including pictures are placed closely between difficult-to- recognize beauty and easy-to-understand story.
Because literature is a pure story, it is released from the difficulty of
recognition of beauty. However, poetry, music and pictures are, being concerned
with beauty in some way, faced with a tough question that what beauty is when
it comes to valuating them as property.
If we accept only one form that was publicly recognized at a certain period
as the sole beauty, this will not be a tough question. As Ancient Egypt
and the Byzantine Empire had a fixed standard of beauty, they were free
from such thorny question that "what is beauty?". In these cases,
art was no more than a reproduction of the identical beauty or at best
only its refinement, it reached to mastery of a workman.
However, now that
it is taken for granted that beauty is variable and changeable with the times, intricate
question as explained above arises. Tentatively, it may be only knowable standard
that contrastive form to common form which a lot of artists use in some times
has high possibility to become a new beauty in the following times.
If beauty is difficult to recognize, the question - who decides it - is focused. Who does make beauty recognized as social authority in a certain period of times? Let's see the beauty which appears in picture. Is it a person like Pope Julius II, a patron of religious world who sponsored a number of masterpieces
of religious pictures? Or, is it one like emperor Rudolf IIof Hapsburg house who poured his colossal wealth into
pictures as worldly collector ? Or, is it one like a picture dealer
Daniel-Henri Kahnweiler who had a keen sense of a current of the new era? Or is
it an enterpriser like Albert C. Barnes who has worked up his way from one of
general public to made a vast wealth and become a collector in the new epoch,
being favored with beneficence of capitalism? Or is it like an art historian
Clement Greenberg who grasped significance of modern art in the lapse of time?
All of these may
be right, or any of them may not be right. The difficulty to recognize beauty ranges
over choosing a beauty decider. Beauty acts only on our subjectivity. Hence, subjectivity
alone is not sufficient to make beauty valuable as property; it only confirms subjective
value. It is necessary for beauty to be grounded on the consensus of a lot of
subjectivity in order to be a proprietary value. Theoretically, there are two
processes that beauty, as consensus, is formed. One is the case that a specific
authority designates it, another is that general public generates it
spontaneously: the former can be paraphrased into dictatorial designation of
beauty, and the latter into democratic formation of beauty.
When beauty is apprehended by common consciousness of the public and is
recognized as an objective value, it takes a special form. A special form
means explicit beauty; preceding situation is just potential beauty. Explicit
beauty, in modern times, an appropriate word to prescribe it is prepared
? what we call a "brand".
Viewing theoretically, a specific monocrat or general public creates a "brand", but the latter never created it in actual history. (In music, famous piece is sometimes formed among general public in the form of folksong. Another example is that Eduard Hanslick's harsh criticism on Richard Wagner's works, but Wagner's popularity drowned it out. However, unless someone designates a "brand" in fine arts, it will never be recognized as masterpiece. Sad to say, it is a nature peculiar to fine arts.) General public is carrying a role of providing economic basis for artwork through their purchasing activity, but in reference to creating a "brand", or concretization of beauty, they are just through and through audiences.
real-time interactive communication is technically enabled, "the public
opinion" can be grasped in a moment. Thus, if applied this way,
"brand" creation by general public may be viable, it is difficult to surely
predict its result though.
From the opposite viewpoint, a "brand" has always been made by a monocrat in the world of fine arts in real history, and is expected to be the same in the future. Politically monocrat is given a strong negative meaning, but in field of art in which public political power is not exercised and people's hobby is made richer, he has a lot of constructive roles.
Also, a political
monocrat monopolizes power for a long time, and his power is approved by
visible authority as state. However, for a monocrat in fine arts world, such an
established authority does not exist. For this reason, it cannot help becoming
temporary and variable. Thus privileged status is not given to a monocrat in fine
arts world nor lifetime honor is guaranteed. In other words, anyone can become
a monocrat, and he can be ousted from that position at any time. Such unstable
position does not fall under the category of political monocrat.
Therefore, "monocrat in fine arts world" is just a linguistic
analogy, and unless he is not in collusion with political monocrat, he
is totally affirmative and indispensable existence to explicate beauty.
However, if this way of saying might pervert its meaning beyond metaphor
of words, in order to avoid distortion of the reason, paraphrasing this
to "the brand maker" would be appropriate.
Pope and emperor of the Hapsburg house might be the "brand maker" in
some specific times. Observing actual history, before modern times, the
"brand maker" who could provide plenty of medium and support to
painters was inseparably linked with religious or political authority.
However, in about
middle of the 19th century, it was revealed that these authorities were not any
longer monopolistic subjects of creating a "brand", underpinned by famous
"the Salon des Refuses" in 1863. When the time of mass production
of medium and support came, the "brand maker" was automatically
detached from political authority, paving the way for above-mentioned enterprisers,
picture dealers and art historians to appear.
Even if explicit form
of beauty, a "brand", is clarified, the difficulty to recognize beauty
itself isn't canceled, it still follows round a "brand" creation. If any,
only one different point is that, there is a constant empirical law for the
methods of creating "a brand", and if only it is observed, the
possibility to invent a "brand" might become higher.
dramatic description of person, vivid color and homely theme seem to be a condition
to easily create a "brand", but if used repeatedly, it will be just
branded as "follower"; there is no clue to determine a "brand".
If superhuman powers of concentration and a transcendental technique are injected
into some work, the probability that it becomes a "brand" will be
higher, but it is only afterwards that it is proved to be a "brand".
After all, a "brand" has no choice but to be discovered by trial and
is a special concrete form of beauty and it has different elements from pure
beauty, represented by the fact that character of a painter, or originator of
work, is related to some degree. As for determination of beauty, the painter has
no qualification or authority, but in creation of a "brand", he/she
has a big influence.
Not only cultural area or contemporary style in the painter's background, but also his name, appearance and life drama concern it. If Pablo Ruiz Picasso was called by his long real name which is difficult to memorize, could his works have become a "brand" easily like that? If Amedeo Modigliani was not a handsome man, more times might have been needed until his works became a "brand". Caravaggio's life filled with ups and downs might have given brilliance to dramatic composition of his works; it may have spurred on becoming a "brand".
Being screened out
with sieve called time, a "brand", even though it may finally
converge on beauty, at the early days after its debut as a work, its evaluation
is sometimes affected by the law peculiar to the "brand". In this
point, a "brand" creation resembles a work to produce a movie star
and a singer.
In short, the "brand"
has almost nothing to do with original beauty, but without this, the difficulty
to recognize beauty isn't canceled. Therefore the "brand" is a
necessary evil for fine arts. A lot of people cannot understand their own sense
of beauty just as they cannot easily find out the purposes of their life.
Therefore, it is a function of the "brand" that makes general public,
who does not have an eye for beauty, believe that they understand the beauty.
The level of the
effect of the "brand" is different in each art field. Pure art (reine
Kunst) is obviously affected more than composite art (Gesamtkunst). Among
pure art, fine arts are more affected compared with literature or music, and among
fine arts､ in ascending order, architecture,
sculpture, picture and photograph. The ratio of increase in economic value by
conferment of the "brand" is overwhelming in picture.
As for picture, in
case of representational painting, a work is made a "brand" first;
the painter is next. In abstraction picture, it follows the reverse course. Mouseion
plans to invest resources into the "brand" making in proportion to its
weight in each art field.
Mouseion does not exclude a conventional way
of picture sale but its purpose is all for aimed at the above-mentioned "brand
making" project. In many cases, usual picture sale begins with monopoly of
established "brand" works. Then, when "brand" works are not
available, picture sale sometimes deviates to counterfeit sale.
"brand" work is only the original one and it is privileged favorite item
of the rich. General public competes to buy its replica and is only made to
support bottom price of the "brand". In any case, plan and volition
to new "brand" creation are very weak there.
Mouseion tries to
incorporate the "brand making"- which has been accomplished with
intuition and immense labor up to now - into daily business activity with full use
of the Internet, or a product of present-day science and technology which can
take in global and popular expanse in a moment.
If trying to discover the "brand" which can be found only by trial and error in the frame of conventional economic activity, a lot of time and cost will be taken. However, in the computer network which can process enormous information in a second, it is possible to almost eliminate these time and cost by reproducing and verifying the "brand making" on several-centimeter square's semiconductors. It resembles that the weather forecast which could not
help depending on the skill of experienced observer became possible to
be measured in a short time by supercomputer.
Even if a "brand" is at first designated by a monocrat, it is not completed unless general public accepts it. General public has unconsciously accustomed to the way of thinking or behavior in their indigenous cultural area, so necessarily a "brand" often becomes "brand" in the cultural area where it was produced. Put in another word, a "brand" is a product of domestic market. On advanced thought, a "brand" is difficult to become an object for import and export.
Then, because, as mentioned
above, creation of a picture "brand" can not be popular, to connect
it with import and export does not come into view of an entrepreneur who
attempts to collect his capital in a short period.
However, thinking from
opposite side, because there is a business chance where no one tries to step in,
it is possible to say that future of picture dealings depends on creation and
exportation of the "brand". Then, Mouseion will concentrate its energy
on export a "brand" as much as its creation by using arms called the
Picture work scarcely
becomes a "brand" in international market crossing the wall of
cultural area. Japanese kneel downs to the European culture, but what to be
counted as "brand" unconditionally are works of only: three great
masters of the Italian Renaissance, impressionists in the 19th century, Pablo
Ruiz Picasso and Marc Chagall. Works of Giovanni Cimabue, Giotto, Andrea
Mantegna, Tintoretto, Albrecht Durer, Nicolas Poussin, Jean-Antoine Watteau,
Jacque-Louis David, Max Ernst and so on are not guaranteed to become a "brand"
in Japan in spite of the key roles they played in art history.
Similarly, as for picture
of Japan, what may become an international "brand" will be limited to
the 18th century's Ukiyoe which fits to the exoticism of the Westerners. Since
the 19th century, in Japan, traditional Japanese style painting and "Youga"
(Western painting that adopted west European technique) developed rapidly, but
there were few examples that masterpieces among them became an international
"brand". (Japanese style paintings developed after the second half of
19th century were pictured in reformed style which was advocated by American
east art historian Ernest Fenollosa〔Curator of the
Department of Oriental Art at Boston Museum of Fine Arts〕and his Japanese cooperator Tenshin Okakura〔First Director of the Tokyo Art School〕; they are different from the Westerners' favorite works
which were pictured before the first half of the 19th century.)
This poorness of international
"brand" may be due to negligence of all those who engaged in picture
criticism and dealings. Because today, distance on the earth has been remarkably
shrinked compared with fifty years ago, it is a disgrace for human culture that
contents of international "brand" still remain at the level of the
classifies cultural area of picture on the earth into following nine areas: the
West Europe and Oceania, Russia and the East Europe, Mediterranean, North
America, South America, the East Asia, the South East Asia, India, the Middle
East (Africa exists as a common basis in all cultural areas, so it will be
handled as a special culture area.) Inside of each area is a domestic picture market,
and a work made there has high probability to be appreciated a "brand"
by general public, or inhabitants. On the other hand, when a picture is traded across
each cultural area, an international market is formed.
Mouseion does not ignore a "brand" creation in this domestic market.
However, with same ardor, we schedule to draft various plans for
"brand" creation in the international market.
Viewing at a worldwide scale, there are nine domestic markets and thirty-six international markets linking them mutually. In all these forty-five markets, Mouseion will create the most profitable "brand". As described above, these markets on earth can be simulated in one server thanks to highly progressed integrated circuits. By reflecting samples of gusto and purchasing activity of general appreciator, art critic and so on, in statistically reliable number, in the server, we'll be able to rationally estimate that which artwork can become a "brand".
In short, this is cyber marketing. And the person who is interested in
the "brand making" project has the same will of ours.
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