Wednesday Mar 10, 2004
A peer is an equal. When you find one, let me know. Artists should look out for the welfare of their comrade creators. But do they?
In Shakespeare’s Othello, Iago, advisor to Othello, speaks this line to his master, the Moor of Venice: “O, beware, my lord, of jealousy! It is the green-eyed monster, which doth mock the meat it feeds on.” The betrayal here is all the more insidious as the treacherous villain Iago lies to Othello and eventually drives him to murder his innocent wife.
It is unquestionably ironic that artists are the most flagrant offenders when it comes to undermining other artists. It is among this anxiety ridden lot that you will find those who are the most cruel to their fellow creators. This behavior, which appears across the spectrum of known and unknown artists, stems from insecurity and manifests itself in unworthy ways—from rejection to worse. After all, what true artist would be jealous of another? You must ask your self that question, and answer it. The concept itself is ludicrous.
No matter what you’ve read about the most well-known of artists, those who are weak, unsupportive, and resentful of their fellows as rivals are petty. Great art cannot come from small minds and miserly hearts. If these artists permit jealously to infect and trivialize their existence, what good does their talent do them? When you’ve touched heaven, what more do you want? When you are on a mission, you have no competition other than your own self.»