Recently, Mexican artist Fabian Chairez, displayed his controversial painting of Mexican revolutionary Emiliano Zapata, at Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City as part of a Zapata exhibition with more than 140 pieces, and people lost their minds over it. Protests erupted in violence outside of the museum and protesters rushed into the museum lobby, threatening to block the entrance until the painting was removed. Descendants of Zapata himself have threatened to sue the artist and the museum for the high crime of depicting Zapata as gay.
At the core of this “controversy” you have two things. One: art. Two: people who dislike said art. That’s it.
Some guy painted an image that some people dislike and now we’re stuck in this circular argument of what constitutes “art” and who gets to decide what’s offensive.
The people in category two believe that the painting is so wholly offensive to their delicate sensibilities that no one should be allowed to see it and that it should not exist, period. Further, they believe the artist should be punished for even daring to create it.
The older I get the more I feel like I repeat myself. It’s a weird feeling as a writer, especially if you’ve written a ton of stuff and haven’t organized it very well. You start to ask yourself: Did I already write about that? Have I said that before? Twice? Three times?? I know I’m guilty of that and in my mind I feel like some geezer who tells his same war stories over and over to family rolling their eyes back in their heads…bah! Like I said, it’s a weird feeling but indulge me here for a bit while I talk about my experience as a publisher.
Recently, a fellow writer and aspiring publisher asked me for some advice on the business. He asked me what BSP could do for him that he couldn’t achieve on his own as a self-publisher. It’s a great question and I had to be completely honest with him: not much. At least, not any more. Continue reading Publishing pariah→