One of the most celebrated, debated and discussed topic, art has as many multifarious interpretations as it has judges. Many have tried to fathom and explain its effect on the human heart and mind, and thus, I will be posting a few extracts from an article I penned about three years ago, in an attempt to unravel in words, for my dear reader, the complex fabric of the effect of art on not just the subject, but also the creator – the artist.
I believe that anything you see, hear or feel (even taste), that moves you, and opens you up to certain hidden core values of your being, is art.
The thing with art is that, be it a piece of writing or music, a picture or painting, an act or performance of any sort – if it unsettles you somehow, or makes you uncomfortable, it is doing the right thing. That is how you know art has moved you!
Art takes you out of your self-built cocoon, invades the raw, vulnerable territory of your soul, to bring forth the (hidden) treasure that has always resided within your soul, but never been found and looked upon.
Art whispers to the heart. It disturbs and soothes and gives and takes; it cuts and scars – only to make you whole. It takes you to secret and overwhelming places that you’ve never allowed yourself to trespass; which if left unvisited and unearthed, may be the deathwatch of your own spiritual, creative, artistic and well, holistic freedom and development.
Yet the thing to note here is that the artist never intends his/her art to produce that effect on you. The artist isn’t bothered. The artist lets out in art what only becomes unbearable and uncontainable. The artist creates for the self as if driven by an outer, superior force (which in fact is as intrinsic as it gets)! This force creates the art through the medium of the artist. Therefore, art is the manifestation of that driving, creative force – something completely beyond the control of the artist.
The artist in a person is a whole other being – nothing like what the world, the immediate circle of friends or for that matter, even the family know them to be. A part of the universe, the artist is only born to create, to affect, to awaken, to even cause to rebel with pre conceived notions at times, to make iconoclasts of blind followers of banal beliefs, and most importantly, to ruffle up feathers and expose in all its beauty, the brightness of the soul.
Just as the artist is largely independent of the person he/she is, so is the art of the artist, largely independent of him/her. It has a life of its own, living and breathing independently. In certain cases, it cannot even be judged on the lines of its creator, for the artist and the art are directly connected to the source of all things, which is why they are able to affect the source of our being.
Art, you see, is subjective: what one may dismiss with indifference, another may feel personally, even offensively at times. For instance, a form of dance, or say, a piece of poetry may offend Tom, inspire Dick and go completely unnoticed and unheeded by Harry. Yet the artist (in this case the dancer or the writer) only created what was too much to hold within; something created for the self, out of desire, thought, experience, and well, just sheer need. The subject and what the art did to the subject, what sensations it aroused were never given much thought to, if even at all. The artist was oblivious to such effects, by habit and by choice.
Art, when unsettling, moving or making the subject uncomfortable, opens up a subdued, a suppressed part of oneself which holds the potential to supersede (usually in a sublime, positive manner) the entirety of a person’s values and outlook. Art, being born of a superior quality and force, speaks directly to the energies one’s soul is composed of.
Art is as necessary as it is dangerous – depends on how you perceive the work that is done on you by it, for it is potent and can change the entire course of your life, by changing your perception.
Until next time,
© Isha Garg
Doodle by Isha Garg