Art, Not Business

Reposted from one of my favorite blogs.  Lefsetz Letter  His blog posts tend to be long-winded so, I whittled it down a bit but, you get the point.

Art, Not Business – Lefsetz Letter.

Art, Not Business

A businessman plays by the rules, an artist breaks them.

A businessman puts money first, an artist sees money as a byproduct.

A businessman has a plan, an artist flies by the seat of his pants.

A businessman is looking to sell out, an artist is looking to continue, forever.

A businessman is all about domination, an artist does not believe in competition.

An artist believes in inspiration, a businessman believes in calculation.

A businessman is a team player, an artist is an individual, a party of one.

Artists lead, business people follow.

Artists make people uncomfortable, businessmen seek to coddle.

Artists are cool, businessmen are not.

Artists challenge convention, businessmen seek to establish conventions.

Artists are independent, beholden to no one and can always say no, businessmen work for the man, execs come and go but the corporation remains.

The best businessmen are artists, but very few deserve the moniker. The worst, and sometimes most financially successful artists are businessmen.

They call it “show business,” but it’s nothing without art.

Artists shoot for the stars, risking it all in the process. Businessmen play it safe.

Artists are about the essence, businessmen are about the trappings.

Mediocre but cheap works in business, but never in art.

Artists say no, businessmen say yes.

An artist takes responsibility, a businessman says his hands are tied and it’s not his fault.

A businessman lies, an artist tells the truth, all the time.

An artist runs on instinct and is not always sure, a businessman runs by spreadsheet and makes no move unless he’s confident.

An artist is tortured, a businessman tortures.

A businessman is about protection, an artist is about destruction.

An artist challenges, a businessman respects.

A businessman is all about hierarchy, the chain of command, the artist sees the world as flat, with the ability to move amongst all peoples, from the CEO to the homeless person.

An artist can reach everybody, a businessman just wants to reach enough people to make his numbers.

A businessman stops when he runs out of money, an artist never stops.

An artist relies on his mind, a businessman relies on his status and machinery.

A businessman takes advantage, an artist is always neutral, at arm’s length from his customer, purveying but never strong-arming.

An artist runs on feel, a businessman runs on intellect.

A businessman believes in resume, an artist’s body of work is his resume.

A businessman is on LinkedIn, artists see no need to be on the site.

Businessmen are confident, artists are insecure.

Businessmen prey on artists, artists prey on people’s souls.

Artists demand excellence, businessmen believe in good enough.

Artists know what’s inside counts, businessmen believe in appearances.

Businessmen are conniving, manipulation and underhanded activity never made a hit record.

Businessmen judge success by money, artists judge success by cultural impact.

Business is here today and gone tomorrow, Steve Jobs will soon be forgotten, whereas art is forever. We know who painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, but we don’t know who was Pope. We can sing Beatle songs, but we threw away our Walkman long ago.

One thought on “Art, Not Business

  1. Pingback: Artists, Get Paid for Your Work | Timotheus "Pharaoh" Gordon

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