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The Performance Art of John Fleck: Words From the Artist and One of His Critics

December 02, 1990

In response to Mr. Fleck's comment that those of us who do not idolize the homosexual community (or praise his art) are in fear of it, let me inform him that although I do not like boiled beets, I am not beet-o-phobic.

Further, although Fleck has been denied funding from the federal National Endowment for the Arts, let him not try to persuade us that he has been silenced; he has merely lost a patron, the unwitting taxpayer.

Now he must earn his money the way the rest of us (artists) do--through merit. Never mind what hothouse flowers at the Los Angeles Theatre Center whine about. Truth is, if their work was that good, they could turn their nose up at government grants.

As a writer, I know that revealing pain without bothering to offer any life-affirming solutions or even a dismal conclusion is not art. It is merely catharsis.

These works Mr. Fleck is proud of are not timeless, nor are they timely; they are just a drain on tax dollars, and I for one am glad the government (and its people) are giving a second thought to playing "affirmative action" with artistic creation.

IRENE LERNER

Thousand Oaks

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