You can’t eat critical acclaim: it’s sales and royalties that pay the bills.
And it’s the gentle, slightly distant, adoration of millions that keeps you warm at night not the feeling that half a dozen nutters are stalking you to get photos of you in your undies.
I know: look at me. Not the bit about photos in my undies, at me as artist because what I do is more art than anything else.
I am totally uncompromising in what I do. I am very, very good at it.
But the world isn’t ready for me.
It’s only just catching up with what I was saying in the mid 1990s and a raft of Johnny-come-latelys are being fêted for recognising things that are slapping them in the face having long ago been left in my rear-view mirror. The people who really get this stuff recognise my work. The vast majority don’t want to know too much.
Art is like that: good art is not necessarily comfortable. Dali’s incredible technical talent is overshadowed by his visions.
There is critical acclaim for a slovenly bedroom, used condoms and soiled knickers.
In the real world, neither gains mass popular support.
Purists might sell one copy of something if they find the right market but they can only sell it once: the people who make the money are the insider traders in art markets who create a false market based on a tiny number of opinions which may be honest but equally may be self-publicity by a critic who needs to stay in the public eye. It is the taste of millions that pays the bills and, ultimately, one gushing arsehole at a cocktail party might be interesting for a few seconds but feeling good comes from knowing that you can walk out onto a stage with 75,000 people who really, really, really want to be there.