1.4 billion dollars of stolen art was recently discovered in Munich. This art collection included works by Pablo Picasso, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Gustave Courbet, and others. This art was also seized by Nazis and was hidden because they regarded these 1400 works, ‘degenerate art’.
Lady Gaga’s fresh album, Artpop, is now available on iTunes radio. It makes me cringe thinking about the criticism she is going to get from people who regard her work as ‘degenerate art’.
One way to interpret both of these artistic expressions is to look at the underlaying foundation, which is debatably: control. Germany, at that time wanted to control how their citizens were being influenced on a daily basis, through art, news, or literature. Lady Gaga controls her identity through her various costumes and characters.
Earlier this fall, Lady Gaga streamed an online concert in London where she gave a moving prologue to one of the album’s song, Swine. She discussed the struggle of hiding behind her wigs and tights because of the lack of love she received. “These love songs aren’t about how someone else is perfect and beautiful and should never change, but rather about wanting love for validation.” (The Atlantic)
It’s important that justice be served to the former owners of the stolen art because their families and decedents are aging. That statement should be a wake up call as there is only so much time to enjoy art, we should make it a priority.