Mark E. Leib's Art People delves into the identity and psychology of a range of contemporary artists living in America today. Directed by Tony Giordano, Art People is produced by the Committed Theatre Company (Thomas G. Waites, Artistic Director).
While the play concerns itself with the challenges of creating art and surviving in a world that is inhospitable to artists (challenges that no doubt have existed for artists throughout modern times) the production itself is asking New Yorkers to confront the possibility that, conditions having grown so acute, our culture may already be inherently and fundamentally non-artistic. Teams of actors and designers from the production, who have dubbed themselves Art People, will be seen around the city in the next several weeks confronting passers-by with a simple existential question: "Do we matter?"
Art People introduces us to six "committed" artists, all of whom show a range of tendencies traditionally associated with artists in one form or another, such as narcissism, introversion, idealism, independence, candor, moral courage, and (especially today) nihilism. The six artists are a dancer, a composer, a painter, a writer, an actor, and a musician.