Lost Art

Lost Art

I was sitting in the lobby of the Hermitage Hotel a week or two ago in Nashville. If you haven’t been there, it is a historical hotel with great art, great architecture, etc. The wood paneling used in the ballroom was the same shipment of wood used on the Titanic. Minnesota Fats lived at this hotel for a while. Anyway, a cool place.

I was looking at the ceiling and realized how much lost art there is. See the pic of the lobby for an example of this place. They definitely don’t build them like they used to. It used to be art and molding and decor. Now it’s drywall.

Hermitage Hotel Lobby

I feel like the same thing is happening with other art, too. As much as I like the internet and the digital age (hell, I make my living from it), there is just a ton of lost art that is occurring the last 25 years. Film, illustration, music- all of it.

The other thing that got me thinking about it was this cool web comic. Someone showed it to me and it was this really awesome web comic with just kick-ass art. I thought it was these great paintings and was kind of disappointed to learn that the illustrations were digital. I’m still a fan, but just thought this guy was sitting there like me doing his work on boards and papers–old school. Don’t get me wrong. I like digital art, too. But I really thought this guy’s work was oils or acrylics or something. It was one of the reasons I was so impressed.

I should have seen this coming. The year I graduated art school, they implemented, in order to graduate every year afterwards, you had to have taken classes in these 3 software programs. One was for photos, one for illustrations and one for layouts and publishing. If you didn’t have those under your belt, you didn’t graduate. My degree was outdated the moment I graduated. WTF.

From Art School Confidential by Daniel Clowes
From Art School Confidential by Daniel Clowes

As cool as this new digital art is, how many people are learning how to paint? Or draw? But with pencils and brushes? Anyway, you get my point. As fun as all this digital stuff is, we’re losing a lot of basic art skills. But I supposed this is no different than any other age.

Recently, I was watching videos of Sammy Davis Jr. until like 3:00 a.m. Look at that lost art. A time of no TV, video games, cell phones or Internet to distract you. He was a singer, tap dancer, drummer, writer, actor and more. One guy!

Maybe I have just been feeling nostalgic the last few weeks. Deal with it. No one made you read this.

Met any tap dancers lately?

Samy Davis Jr.