Great art is never rewarded or given it's due. There are literally millions of artists all struggling to make ends meet. Many of them have amazing talent that will never be recognized or rewarded. They begin with a desire to create which grows to a dream of being an artist in life. Many questions and journeys begin for the artist as they start their quest for greatness. As time passes, some of the lucky, not necessarily talented ones will be chosen for market success. They will inadvertently find success, mostly early on their quest, because of being in the right place at the right time with the right people selecting who is their favorite "Flavor of the Day". It's a hard sad truth that is gaining ground more and more everyday. Simply turn on the television, the radio or go to the theater and see the talent that is is in the limelight. I'm not discounting their talent, I'm only saying that there should be more variety and more voices heard than just the "popular" artists in certain cliques. There are many more vastly talented artists with vastly superior skills being ignored or pushed aside. 15 minutes ago, I was invited to a local "contemporary" portrait art contest, the artists have already been selected, most I never heard of. The artists will have a limited amount of time to draw from a live model and the winner will be selected on true merit supposedly, but what I've seen in the past, it's not skill, but local hero fame that have allowed them to win first lace. Last year an artist used an opaque projector right in front of everyone and won. I like his work, but I don't think it's fair to the other artists who created from visual observation in a live format. I already know the outcome for this year based on the selection of artists. This is sad and I'm tired of art cliques, local connections based on looks or age rather than raw talent. I'm tired of the local stars being written about by art "critiques" who have absolutely no formal art training who have aligned themselves with the local media to give them power to control the local art market. There has to be a better or more fair way to judge art, music and film. Perhaps one day, the public will say - enough, time to see real talent again.