Aelita Andre has somehow made it to international fame as the youngest of 'great' painters, an abstract expressionist no less. But sorry, wasn't the abstract expressionist ideology so mid 1900s? Why the rebirth? Why a child?
I do have suspicions that hype and some incredibly PR savvy supporters (ie parents) behind the girl made this happen. I do think she is having the time of her life and a fun one at that despite her life not yet really having begun. But listening to the critics and analysts harking on about how she is a natural, that something within her is creating these 'consistent' works, the freedom of expression that lies stagnant within our own age of art. Come on.
Although Aelita does not know it, the style of work that she plays with does indeed have a history, even if she doesn't know about it (which the critics continue to marvel at). Did not Jean Dubuffet and the Art Brut movement crave the blank slate innocence of a child's mind and created art in an attempt to simulate the 'purity', the rawness of being truly free creativity? Well here we have a child, who is painting away happily, four years of age with little direction except a vast amount of prodding encouragement and all the art supplies one could ever dream of! Look at her studio space; that which no other child would be allowed. Is this freedom or molding?
Some of the comments on her art talked of purity, a clarity of thought in contrast to Pollock's murky fields. Everything is a spur of the moment alas justified by this 'consistency' in her oeuvre. One may think that she achieves what no adult artist could (leave alone the fallen wings approach of the Art Brut practitioners). She is influenced though. By the sheer resource that is given to her and the pickled fame that has been introduced by some ambitious art worldian, she has joined the leagues of the controlled. In the video you hear her say: "Welcome to MY space", sounding like some worldly architect. Aelita has already become part of the art gallery institution (her New York debut was last weekend). Innocence is being robbed of her.
So is this going to turn to mush, cheekily I might add, like her paintings? We have to keep in mind that although she is here, in this labelled prodigy status, Aelita can inspire us with her not-a-care-in-the-world fun art experience. Let's not allow the thousands of dollars get in the way of that.