Starving artist

Starving artist

A starving artist is an artist who sacrifices material well-being in order to focus on their artwork. They typically live on minimum expenses, either for a lack of business or because all their disposable income goes towards art projects. Some starving artists desire mainstream success but have difficulty due to the high barriers in art such as visual arts, the film industry, and theatre. These artists frequently take temporary positions (such as waitering or other service industry jobs) while they focus their attention on breaking through in their preferred field. Others may find enough satisfaction in living as artists to choose voluntary poverty regardless of prospects of future financial reward or broad recognition. Virginia Nicholson writes in "Among the Boheminans: Experiments in Living 1900 - 1939":

"Fifty years on we may judge that Dylan Thomas's poverty was noble, while Nina Hamnet's was senseless. But a minor artist with no money goes as hungry as a genius. What drove them to do it? / I believe that such people were not only choosing art, they were choosing the life of the artist. Art offered them a different way of living, one that they believed more than compensated for the loss of comfort and respectability." [Virginia Nicholson, "Among the Boheminans: Experiments in Living 1900 - 1939", (p. 2); Penguin, 2003.]

Cultural depictions

The "starving artist" is a typical figure of Romanticism in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, and is seen in many paintings and works of literature. Henri Murger wrote about four starving artists in "Scènes de la Vie de Bohème", the basis for the operas La Bohème (Puccini) and La Bohème (Leoncavallo). Franz Kafka wrote a short story called [ A Hunger Artist] in 1924 about a man who is world-famous for his public performances of fasting.


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Fort Wayne Starving Artist Coalition — Infobox musical artist Name = Fort Wayne Starving Artist Coalition Landscape = yes Origin = flagicon|USA Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA Years active = 2003–2005, 2007 Present Current members = Alan Quandt Past members = Matt J BrownThe Fort Wayne… …   Wikipedia

  • Starving the Vultures — Infobox Album | Name = Starving the Vultures Type = studio Artist = Circle of Dead Children Released = 1999 Recorded = 1999 Genre = Deathgrind Length = 24:18 Label = Willowtip Records Producer = Circle of Dead Children Reviews = Last album =… …   Wikipedia

  • starving — starv|ing [ starvıŋ ] adjective sick or dying because of a lack of food: starving children a. INFORMAL very hungry starving actor/artist/writer someone who does not have much money because they choose to spend their time on their art rather than… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • The Starving Gypo's — Infobox musical artist Name = Img capt = Img size = Landscape = Background = group or band Alias = Origin = Hounslow, Greater London, England Genre = Alternative rock, Britpop Years active = 1996 ndash;2003 Label = Touching Cloth Records… …   Wikipedia

  • Such Blinding Stars for Starving Eyes — Infobox Album | Name = Such Blinding Stars For Starving Eyes Type = Album Artist = Cursive Released = September 9,1997 Recorded = November and December, 1996 Genre = Indie rock, Emo Length = 42:03 Label = Crank! Records Producer = A.J. Mogis and… …   Wikipedia

  • A Hunger Artist — ( Ein Hungerkünstler ), also translated as A Fasting Artist and A Starvation Artist , is a short story by Franz Kafka published in Die Neue Rundschau in 1922. The protagonist is an archetypical creation of Kafka, an individual marginalised and… …   Wikipedia

  • Reginald Marsh (artist) — Infobox Artist name = Reginald Marsh imagesize = caption = birthname = birthdate = 1898 Paris, France deathdate = July 3, 1954 Dorset, Vermont, United States of America nationality = American field = Painter movement = Social Realism works = Why… …   Wikipedia

  • Sean O'Dwyer (artist) — Infobox Artist bgcolour = #6495ED name = Sean O Dwyer imagesize = caption = birthname = birthdate = December 4, 1964 location = Nenagh, Co. Tipperary, Republic of Ireland deathdate = deathplace = nationality = Irish field = training = movement =… …   Wikipedia

  • Blaine Fontana — is a Bainbridge Island, Washington based artist and designer.BiographyFontana was born in Seattle, Washington and raised on Bainbridge Island. He began his interest in art at a young age. During his teens he commuted to two High Schools in order… …   Wikipedia

  • Nava Lubelski — (born 1968 in New York City) is a contemporary artist who currently works and lives in Asheville, NC.[1] Contents 1 Background 2 Style 3 Galleries …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.