The question has been posed numerous times over the last few decades. Countless essays and papers have been written on the subject, this isn’t going to be an academic piece of writing. Simply just a quick thought on the subject, since recently someone I know said to me that painting had nothing left to offer artists; that painting was in a sense dead.
My immediate thought was that painting is far from being dead, it is a medium like all other mediums and disciplines; clay, collage, assemblage, photography, etching, linocut, digital media, installation, performance etc. It is up to the artist to push the envelope, to push the medium and the discipline. Challenge conventions and redefine what it means; what art means, what it means to create.
It is up to us as creative people to use our chosen mediums to create works of art that rise above the ideologies of relevance of the medium and instead make the concept, message, idea more relevant. Even when the work is about the exploration of the medium in itself, it is an investigation into how the medium; in this case painting, can be extended, pushed, improved, questioned etc.
I hope that was clear as mud.