Peter Trippi posed some excellent questions to the panel that provoked some good discussion.
Still on my mind:
In the movie “Michael Collins” the leader of the revolutionaries says to the eponymous hero, “If we are to create the Republic, we must act as if it already exists”. I think this is true of the realist movement today. We need discussion and ideological debate to establish academic credibility. We must act as if this already exists, creating fora within which healthy discussion can flourish. We live within a post-modern world, so arguing with enthusiastic postmodernists is really not worth it; realism has been theorized out of existence long ago. we should be far more involved in regenerating critical discussion of the part of the art world that we inhabit. Obviously painters and sculptors are going to continue making figurative and realist art, so we would be well served by creating and recording our own discourses that engage the ideas that are of interest to us. Discussion of controversial ideas in realist art is a welcome sign of life within the realist community – the discussions should be published and made available. The ideology of millennial realism will emerge from discourse.
The phenomenon of the rise of the atelier movement will ultimately attract the attention of academic writers, simply by the fact that it exists and that it is supported by the population regardless of critical dismissal.