From the very beginnings, as an art student, I had been told about the obstacles artists had to overcome to make their art. The art history books explained the physical and mental issues artists had to manage. The poverty they faced without outside support meant a lack of materials, space and maybe even food and housing. The artists I read about, or my professors told me about, had difficult relationships, were reclusive, were surrounded by death, had tragic accidents leaving them impaired, and probably did not earn much, if any, money. They were drunk, high or crazy! and relied on the whims of patrons, gallery owners, curators and collectors who could make or break their art careers! (They still can.)
Picasso was demeaned when people saw his African art influenced Les Demoiselles d'Avignon, the painting considered a seminal moment in entering the period of modern art. One of his contemporaries declared he should commit suicide! Luckily collectors Gertrude and Leo Stein saw it was revolutionary, if others in the contemporary art community at the time did not. But see????At the time, what he did was nuts!
Neither this event, Picasso's infamous womanizing, etc. seemed to harm his career. As he and Georges Braque collaborated on Cubism the same gallery paid Picasso more for his work than Braque earned.
If you can't do something crazy, being born with an affliction helps, too! I already wrote about the miniature artist who has microscopes to view his VERY pricey art. Can artists achieve monetary and critical sucess without being a carnival act like the bearded lady or the dawrf boy or the Siamese twins? I recently read about a young boy with autism, a serioud issue, who was obsessed with making art! Well, I am, too, (obsessed with making art) as were both my sons who filled up sketchbooks and paper from the time they could hold a pencil and scribble! They were "normal" kids, so no press for their art work.I am not saying these special people should not be noticed; I am saying other artists should be, too.
There are stories about so-called idiot savants who can't tie their shoes, but make art, or legends such as Lee Godie who hung out in front of Chicago's Art Institute selling work to those she liked for $25 or $30 dollars. I recently spoke to someone who had made one of those purchases, spending $25.00. After she died her works sell into the thousands at galleries such as Intuit and Carl Hammer in Chicago.
So I still want to know why the "normal" artists don't get news stories and attention when they do good work, but don't act out! I make art because I love to. People say they purchase it because they feel what I put into it. According to Art Business we should all be able to make a living doing it - see if it helps you if you don't feel like being crazy for your art!