Excellence is a Plateau
Not a Peak
Quick now; Who was the better artist - Picasso or Van Gogh or Escher?
I don't think the question makes any sense.
It's a bit like asking: What is the best color? or the best flavour?
In athletics they have a meme, GOAT Greatest of all Time
I can't participate in discussions about that. You actually need to be pretty erudite in the topic to talk about it. But also it's fruitless.
I like making pictures.
My pictures are pretty modest.
I participate in a small painting group. I'm impressed at the work I see. I can't really say who among us is the best.
I tour the Vancouver Art Gallery once in a while. Rarely now since it's pretty expensive.
The pictures there are on another level from those I see in my painting group. But at that level I can't really say which is the best.
Though I have personal preferences, all the work is very good.
The pattern here is that with art there are levels of excellence. Some artists are clearly better than others. But there are many artists at each level.
One way of describing the levels is to distinguish between amateur and professional. The professional gets to spend much more time and money on the work, and it shows. Lots of people like making pictures. But I've seen that success in art is largely a social game, not an aesthetic game. And those who win at the social game get the resources to stretch their wings and fly to a new level. But no matter what level they are on they have lots of company.
What do you think?