how to baffle an art student

listening to Billy O’Donnell talking on the savvy painter podcast


He talks about going to art school and not having patience with art teachers who don’t teach.  He says, ( I tried to rewind the recording but couldn’t so this is what I remember him as saying:

one teacher said to him ‘This painting has no weight.’

Billy0 said, ‘what does that mean, no weight.’

the teacher said ‘that’s for you to find out.’

this story reminds me of one of my teachers saying ‘ you have to interrogate your paintings’

I didn’t ask him what he meant but instead asked him if he would show me how to do this.  I am not sure that happened.

the point of this is that there are so many words which go undefined when art teachers talk to you (from my experience).  These words are obviously used in a very specific sense for example the word ‘think’

do they go undefined because students assume that there is a meaning there but are too shy/inexperienced to ask of the meaning


does this allow ‘art discourse to end up meaningless but impressive

or are there certain things which are intuited and that art teachers et al try to use an ineffective language to express?

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