Lady Gaga – Art is a Lie

by Art Fag City on November 17, 2009 · 17 comments Newswire

POST BY PADDY JOHNSON

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I like Lady Gaga’s new single Bad Romance a lot more than I do her star performance in artist Francesco Vezzoli’s “The Shortest Musical You Will Never See Again.” Debuted this Saturday at the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, the piece included Gaga herself playing Damien Hirst’s rotating pink piano, a row of Russian Bolshoi ballet dancers wearing Frank Gehry Muccia Prada and Baz Luhrmann, and Vezzoli’s interpretive needle point. Admittedly I didn’t see the work in person, but from the documentation I’ve seen it would appear the piece offers all short lived interests of an all-star game — a lot of famous people, none of them at their best.

Presumably some time after the performance, The Wall Street Journal asked Gaga what art meant to her.

“For me, art is a lie, and the artists are there to create lies we kill when we make it true. Francesco and I were like warriors on stage, trying to make a true moment….Art is life, life is art -— the question is what came first?”

Or to put it another way, “Life isn’t meaningful unless we’re creating”? Anyone else care to take a stab at this? I feel like I’m reading tea leaves.

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

clafleche November 17, 2009 at 11:32 pm

I think she means that (good) art is a challenge, in that it creates alternate non-realities that we, as viewers, are forced to interpret and therefore make real.

Reply

clafleche November 17, 2009 at 7:32 pm

I think she means that (good) art is a challenge, in that it creates alternate non-realities that we, as viewers, are forced to interpret and therefore make real.

Reply

Ben November 18, 2009 at 1:57 am

art is a lie
&
Art is life, life is art
=
life is a lie.

Francesco and I were…trying to make a true moment
=
Francesco and I were…trying to make a not lie moment / or / trying to make a not art moment / trying to make a not life moment.
Clearly not, but that’s what I got out of it.

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Ben November 17, 2009 at 9:57 pm

art is a lie
&
Art is life, life is art
=
life is a lie.

Francesco and I were…trying to make a true moment
=
Francesco and I were…trying to make a not lie moment / or / trying to make a not art moment / trying to make a not life moment.
Clearly not, but that’s what I got out of it.

Reply

Bethany November 18, 2009 at 1:50 pm

there’s something there about authenticity of experience…? not sure. also, the video is broken.

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Bethany November 18, 2009 at 9:50 am

there’s something there about authenticity of experience…? not sure. also, the video is broken.

Reply

Art Fag City November 18, 2009 at 2:10 pm

They removed that quickly.

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Art Fag City November 18, 2009 at 10:10 am

They removed that quickly.

Reply

Adelaide November 20, 2009 at 2:07 am

An unsuccessful attempt to sound terribly clever and “high brow”

Nothing deep.

Reply

Adelaide November 19, 2009 at 10:07 pm

An unsuccessful attempt to sound terribly clever and “high brow”

Nothing deep.

Reply

darren angle December 12, 2009 at 6:50 pm

Oscar Wilde made famous the idea that life itself is a performance piece–art. Life and Art are indistinguishable.

The ‘lie’ is not some kind of false fact.

But to say that how one crafts their experience in life is somehow separate from their art is a lie.

Art is a presentation of one’s self through a medium, and life (everything outside of the canvas, off the stage) is an equally creative opportunity.

Gaga will not be known for the profundity of a few compositions, but the grand performance of her life–her aesthetics, her interviews, her outreach to the gay community, etc etc which all amount to her impact / history / arttt

SEE:

Oscar Wilde’s “The Decay of Lying”

http://www.victorianweb.org/authors/wilde/decay.html

Reply

darren angle December 12, 2009 at 2:50 pm

Oscar Wilde made famous the idea that life itself is a performance piece–art. Life and Art are indistinguishable.

The ‘lie’ is not some kind of false fact.

But to say that how one crafts their experience in life is somehow separate from their art is a lie.

Art is a presentation of one’s self through a medium, and life (everything outside of the canvas, off the stage) is an equally creative opportunity.

Gaga will not be known for the profundity of a few compositions, but the grand performance of her life–her aesthetics, her interviews, her outreach to the gay community, etc etc which all amount to her impact / history / arttt

SEE:

Oscar Wilde’s “The Decay of Lying”

http://www.victorianweb.org/authors/wilde/decay.html

Reply

Ace January 7, 2010 at 11:46 am

Didn’t Natalie Portman’s character in Closer say “Art is a lie” as well? Just saying…

Reply

Ace January 7, 2010 at 7:46 am

Didn’t Natalie Portman’s character in Closer say “Art is a lie” as well? Just saying…

Reply

Tiff August 11, 2010 at 9:24 pm

Nothing original at all, the whole ‘Art is a lie’ quote has been around for centuries, with the most famous one by Picasso. I wish she did acknowledge that she scammed their sayings off them, but ah well. Nevertheless it does make her seem less blonde to the public by saying that.

Reply

Tiff August 11, 2010 at 5:24 pm

Nothing original at all, the whole ‘Art is a lie’ quote has been around for centuries, with the most famous one by Picasso. I wish she did acknowledge that she scammed their sayings off them, but ah well. Nevertheless it does make her seem less blonde to the public by saying that.

Reply

basemonkey August 29, 2011 at 1:59 am

“Art is a lie..”, “Art is life,” and “Life is art” are all appropriations (or plagirisms!) of pre-existing quotes by other more historic critical figures. Honestly they’re not especially obscure or revelational to anyone who reads this kind of stuff.

I actually like Gaga, but I take the usage of these quotes more as a branding strategy targeted for an audience that has likely never heard such things before. It shouldn’t be a shock to see a pop star take part in carefully crafting their image like this. In the larger scheme of things, it shouldn’t matter that such quotes get miscredited considering how fluffy the sentiment actually is, right? I mean-what is she actually saying? I think she basically says to “be creative” in the least creative way. I think trying to divine anything more than that is conscripting her with undue credit. She isn’t a Nietsche or Barthes.

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