I’ll have more to say about this in the future. My simple answer is, there’s more than enough art out there that to be obsessively focused on so-called greatness becomes inexcusable. But for now:
After filmmakers, actors, or musicians are accused of sexual assault or other misdeeds, how should we think about their work? NPR’s Ari Shapiro talks with author Claire Dederer, who considers the question in an essay for The Paris Review: “What Do We Do with the Art of Monstrous Men?”
They did or said something awful, and made something great. The awful thing disrupts the great work; we can’t watch or listen to or read the great work without remembering the awful thing. Flooded with knowledge of the maker’s monstrousness, we turn away, overcome by disgust. Or … we don’t. We continue watching, separating or trying to separate the artist from the art. Either way: disruption. They are monster geniuses, and I don’t know what to do about them.