On Wednesday night I attended a screening of the John Waters film Pecker, an ARTS House event in conjunction with the Visual Arts department. The movie was about a small-town teenager named Pecker becoming an overnight sensation once he publishes pictures he took of his family and other sights around his town. Pecker certainly has an eye when it comes to photography, and while the things he photographs aren’t typical of the “norm” in the art world of the late 1990s, Pecker scores an art show in New York City as well as an agent and a hefty sum of cash. His photographs bring a lot of unwanted attention to his small town and his family, however, and he eventually finds a way to keep making his art while making everyone in his hometown as well as the art scene in New York City happy.
After the movie, we had a discussion with Professor David Ogawa about how the movie portrays the art world and if it would work with today’s media. The conversation continued on to the purviews of art, norms and aesthetics. The discussion flowed pretty smoothly, and it was good to hear the opinions of people who I had never met before. For me, this is what I have been looking for more of. I watched a movie I knew nothing about and spoke with people I had never met, and I enjoyed not only the movie but what these people had to say about it. It always pays off to try new things!