Striking a balance

It’s quite fashionable to look down upon “entertaining art”, its almost as if entertainment equals crassness. While its true that a lot of mainstream and popular art be it films, theater, music in India (for that matter the world actually) does tend to be so, its unfair to lump all forms of entertainment together.

At the same time, the rhetoric of the practitioners is that we serve what sells. Interesting choice of words don’t you think? An art practitioner/artist chooses to sell his trade and caters to a certain market. No doubt he has to make a living, but merely coping out by saying so is not done.

Now lets try and go back in time a little bit, see how the traditional art forms evolved. Back when there was no mass media, no amusement parks, how do you think people got over their boredom. It would be fair to assume, they either picked up a musical instrument, a pen, a brush, a book or sporting equipment. So what I’m trying to say is that art has always had a connection with entertainment.

Just because over the years, we as humans have turned out to be collectively dafter, the entertainment that we sought and received has probably been dumbed down too.

There is nothing wrong in catering to the masses and trying to be a popular artist, as long as you keep reminding yourself you are an artist, which is to say that entertainment need not be mindless madness. You can mix entertainment and grace (for lack of a better word). Else you might end up being a trader not an artist.

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