What successful artworks exemplify 'mediocre' for you?

Not progressive enough for 1960 or not progressive enough now? I don’t want to turn this into a political thread but the political spectrum has changed a lot during the last 50 years. In fact, on some issues, like universal healthcare, JFK would be regarded as a near left-wing extremist if he proposed his plan today.

In regards to Civil Rights. I’m not saying criticism of him is always fair, but he wasn’t a Progressive God or anything.

To me.

(I don’t want to derail this thread any more, but I do wish Robert Kennedy had the chance to become President.)

edit: Thanks for the healthcare link!

I like his landscapes, and how he plays with perspective and the swoopiness of his lines. I’m just not terribly fond of most of his portrait/people pieces, I guess. (Except The Spotted Man, of course. How could you not love that derriere?)

I’ve said this here in other contexts, I think. I’m too young to remember Kennedy, but always heard about him as this, well, as this Progressive God, to steal your phrase. I was kind of surprised when I did some serious research on civil rights to find that many black leaders didn’t much trust him (they did trust Bobby as AG, but John not so much) and were not at all convinced that he had their best interests at heart. Also worth remembering that while Kennedy was important in developing some of the Great Society programs, and might have instituted them if he hadn’t been killed, Johnson was the one who really pushed them through.

I was going to mention the following:
–Comic strips such as Blondie, Dennis the Menace, and Hagar the Horrible: not terrible, but not good either.
–Novels: Many in the thriller-and-similar genre would qualify: James Patterson, Tess Gerritsen, Dan Brown, people like that.
–Music: Much of what’s being produced in the country genre today. A lot of singer-songwriter stuff in the folk and folk-rock genres. Also, a lot of praise music, and 20th century English church anthems, just about without exception. (John Rutter did write a couple of good ones.)
–Movies: The one that immediately springs to mind is Hugo, but I’m not sure that’s fair: the clocks, and to a lesser extent the whole train station atmosphere, were very well done, well beyond mediocrity. But the story is quite weak–not terrible, but not good by any means–so in that way it qualifies.

I’ll also chime in with Annie Leibowitz’s photographs.

I would rate Rihanna as firmly in the mediocre category. She can sing perfectly well, but is not among the best singers of her generation. She’s… okay.

But I love this one!


And The Perfectionist.

I really like his Americana work. Much better than his early droopy Impressionist-type Paris dribble. I feel like GW puts emotion into his work, even when he’s painting Stone City, Iowa or his mother. Like I said, Americana, but (to me) not without meaning.

Again. Totally biased. I learned how to drive on this road and lived just two inches to the left of this scene. The General Store is still there.

Sorry for the derailment. Back to regularly scheduled posting.