Separating the art from the artist
In light of the recent Penny Arcade controversy, I saw a number of comments from people stating that they are now done with all things Penny Arcade.
I didn't want to derail those threads but I thought this rises the question about if/should you separate the art from the artist, or should you take a moral stand against something becaues of the opinions/actions of the artist even if you think the art is good. For example, do you watch the films of Roman Polanski even knowing about his past?
Personally, on the most part, I tend to judge the art for its own merits because if you don't separte the two then you end up going down a very slippy slope as I doubt very many artists are clean cut. Am I not going to listen to The Smiths because Morrissey says some very strange things? However there is a part of me that thinks that there has to be a line, and that might be if their opinions/actions start to affect their work, for example a homophobic rap star using the word baggins as every other word or a director making a thinly veiled propagenda film.
So where do other people stand on this? Am I wrong for thinking that The Pianist is a great film despite the fact the director has a very questionable past? Or should we be judging things on their own merits? by not letting our opinions on the artists cloud our judgement of the art itself.