Daily Archives: October 6, 2010

Aesthetic and Economic Value (VIAL)

What does the most expensive work of art by a living artist look like?

Lucien Freud’s “Benefits Supervisor Sleeping” sold for $33,501,893 in May 2008 (or what it costs to field 33 US soldiers for one year in Afghanistan).

If you earned minimum wage (federal: $7.25/hr) and spent no money on food, rent, clothing or other necessities it would take you a little over 2,310 years to purchase this painting.

The most expensive painting by a deceased artist is Jackson Pollock’s “No. 5”– which sold for $140,000,000 in 2006:

The US will spend $ 1,600,000,000,000 in 2011 on defense.

 

Context, Genre, Text (ContCult)

Let’s examine three categories we’ve already discussed in class.

Context

From a documentary about the SL Refugee All-Stars foregrounding the camps of Guinea and the specificity of the civil war to the knowledge that the SLRA now tour the world.

The shift in locales of performance is dramatic and might cause us to reconsider our initial response to the music. Which isn’t to say something as dreary as that SLRA “sold out.” Rather, the initial setting into which SLRA were placed and their status as “real” (and vulnerable) people rather than media constructs such as Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber, et al lends an authenticity, a “raw” simplicity, to their music that– I suspect for most of us– strikes deep.

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