I feel another rant coming on. What's more, it is about how I understand art, once again!
Art is supposed to be free. It should be free. Free to do its own thing. Free to be its own purpose.
But! Art should also be free to be political. Opinionated. Not only about beauty, but about issues. Free to be unpleasant, uncomfortable.
All art is about things that matter to the artist, in one way or another. That can be both "Ars gratia Artis" (Sorry for stealing, MGM!) and art that kicks some issue right where it hurts.
And another BUT! Art does not exist in a vacuum. Art exist as much because an artist makes it, as it exists because people see it. Art does not only spring forth from the artist's pen (or brush, or graphics tablet, or guitar, or hammer and chisel), but is also created in the heads of all the people who view it. (I have already done a journal entry about this.) Thus, NO ART IS ABOVE CRITIQUE, as no opinion is above opposition. And neither is it above dislike. No art is objectively antirely true, or valid, or good. Neither is it entirely untrue, or invalid, or bad. The rest is a matter of taste, and argument. A whole lot of argument, sometimes.
And that is just as well, because if it wasn't: Why bother? Why provoke? Why challenge our peers? Why be inspired or angered or touched? Why?