Why Realism Speech - Absolutely Brilliant!

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Why Realism Speech - Absolutely Brilliant!


Published before 2005

Hello Mr. Ross,

I really wanted to tell you that I read every word of WHY REALISM. Absolutely brilliant! Combined with your past essays exposing the fraud that is modernism, your writing has been like a concert to my heart.

Back in the mid 1960's when modernism was the indisputable mindset among the art elite and every university art program, I was faced with a dilemma upon graduating from high school. My dream was to teach art, however when I visited the university painting studios, my heart was broken by the no-rules-anti-traditional art being taught. Stating my concerns, I was told by a professor that my love for traditional realism would be met with strong resistance and that to be successful I would need to emulate the "painting styles" of my professors. My disappointment was profound for I knew there was no possibility of giving in to this dogma. All this must be placed into the context of the time - the height of the American build up in Vietnam. If a male student did not maintain a certain grade point average in college, he was certain to be drafted. Since my older brother was already serving in the Army in Vietnam, I decided to join the Navy rather than risk being drafted or worse still - submitting myself to the brain washing of modernism. I felt completely alone as an artist, but found solace in the few books I could find about traditional painting. I began questioning my own beliefs. Was it ignorance on my part that I was unable to see the "brilliance" of contemporary modernism? Now, nearly fifty years later, I can confidently say that avoiding the insidious influence of the of the flat-canvas-no-rules school of art was the best course I could have taken. When I began reading the A.R.C.'s philosophy several years ago, I felt an incredible relief. Finally someone was defending traditional realism with persuasive eloquence. Modernism was actually being called to question and exposed for the shameful harm it has brought to the visual arts for over a century.

THANK YOU for your wonderful efforts in setting art back on its foundation.

Tom Nielsen, ASMA