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artistic and other frustrations

Yesterday, PD1 exhibited some of her paintings in the Antwerp Museum for Photography. Over breakfast this morning she was in a rare angry mood.

No, she was satisfied with the responses she got on her work, the room was not ideal (lighting etc.) but that was not what mattered…

Me : So?

She : There was this other work, a video-performance. I once saw by accident on Arte a short-film and this performance stole the whole idea of that film, from start to finish! The whole idea was nicked!

Me : Wake up! That’s the majority way of creating art, or science for that matter.

She : But it is so unfair! Why do people steal ideas ?

Me : Maybe they don’t see it as stealing. Maybe they believe they do a better thing with the original idea than the person who invented it.

She : Nothing can beat the original! Anyway, I find the most rewarding thing about art to come up with an original idea and work it out. It cannot be rewarding to steal other people\’s ideas.

Me (dry) : I think such people are after other rewards…

She : The same thing happens at school. Sometimes I come up with a suggestion to use a different technique or material and then a few weeks later, half of my class seems
to have worked this out too.

Me : So ? You still had the idea.

She : Yes, but the Jury doesn’t know that!

Me : So ? After the Jury you can still be confident to come up with new ideas, these others may fear they will only be able to repeat themselves.

She : But is it so unfair!

Me : What’s the alternative ? Are you going to lock yourself up in your room to
paint and let nobody see the result?

She : No, but I prefer to do my painting here at home, on my own with nobody looking over my shoulder constantly to see whether they can use some of my ideas. I will
paint on my own and only when it is fully finished they may see the result!

Me : That’s the spirit girl! You are much cleverer than I will ever be…

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