Friday, April 8, 2011

seeing & knowing

So, what is art?

To be able to “have” art, I think it’s essential that I know first what it is, don’t you agree?

You see, the problem I have with the word “art” is that is used so freely, so thoughtlessly.

“I love your art!”

“You have such great talent for art!”

“I’m amazed at your art!”

And don’t misinterpret me when I say that, because I’m one of tho
se people that use the word “art” to describe something beautiful or done with great skill.

Deedra Levy's "Nerissa"

What about the ugly things that are also created with skill? Are they “art” too?

Michael Hussar's "Lamb of God"

To approach the question “What is art?” I must work with two principles that have proved efficient when it comes to studying anything:

1) Understanding the value of ignorance.

2) Understanding the value of intellectual humility.

The value of ignorance: If what we see is affected by what we know, then in theory, it would be more sensible to see things first as they are without any background knowledge, and then with a little background knowledge. When we deal with art that we are familiar with the artist, then it changes. Tricky , huh? Ok lets try an experiment. Look at this painting, absorb it.

This is by Van Gough.

It was his last painting before he committed suicide.

Vincent Van Gogh "Wheat field with crows"

Notice how that last statement changed the way you looked at it? Did it change what you were looking for in that painting?

What we know changes what we see.

This makes me think that maybe art in itself is always personal, always subjective to the expectation. Art does not change our life, our life, our experiences changes what we see in art!

All this time I’ve been looking for that inspiration that will make art, when my own negativity, depression and desperation were changing what I saw as art!

What do you think?Maybe I'm on to something here?

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

crickets and art


Things have been awfully quiet around here.

*cricket* cricket*

Nothing. Not a single post. And, why is that? You must be wandering. You must know.

The last few months of my life, well… almost a year and things have been changing. Not the kind of change that you notice right away, but something exasperatedly slow. Like the agonizing waiting in an Emergency Room, when you hold your breath every time you hear the nurse’s shoes, when you try to make out the hushed voices behind closed doors. And you wait. But nothing happens.

This agonizing wait, also known as “separation”, has taken more than a toll on this blog. Countless times I sat, opened a fresh post page, and waited. And waited. But the words never came. It was as if the flow of words that streamed form my fingertips had dried up. It was hard facing it, but it’s the honest to God truth, I’m dried up.

I still kept an eye out for things worth sharing. I looked, and I looked, and I looked again. Nothing. Nada. I gave up on the idea itself, on the blog, on you my dear reader. I sulked whenever I saw a lovely post made by some witty and inspired blogger. I resented my muse for abandoning me. I began to hate the concept of art itself. But how could I hate something that had brought me so much joy in the past? Hadn’t I declared that life itself was an art?

This last question worried me; maybe I don’t know what art is. I could look that up, dig deep into what art means. Maybe there’s more to it than colors and shapes. Maybe.

But what is art?