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artists as outsiders

the debate of artists as outsiders was tackled back when i was in grad school,
the debate is: are artists outside of society or are they a part of society?
and the debate continues w/ are artists influenced by the goings on in the world (influence from outside/external)
or are they the beacons from which change comes (somewhat internal, and from this comes the debate of the avant garde, the forerunners who change all, and from which most take 10 yrs to catch up to)
there's not really an answer, it's a bit of both, stuff comes in, then goes out and becomes a cycle,
as for the van gogh reference, yes, he sold only one painting to his brother, but his brother also supported him during his 10 yr art career (his last 10 yrs of life), and the debate as far as he's concerned, he was untrained, was friends w/ gauguin and had interaction w/ him (who was trained but rejected training) and so his below the radar career was developed during his lifetime, and then the myths spring up after that....
but one thing to remember, he planned everything and was very passionate about art...
my late 2 cents for today....s---

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