The purposes, motivations, intentions, and inspirations behind art are endless. The definition of art remains controversial and multifarious, but the influence of art gets better once you allow your conscience to absorb and understand diverse perspectives that art offers.
Being one of the most creative ways of expressing human experience, we have used art as a means of telling stories. May it be the story of a single person, of a community, or of a nation, art has in many ways contributed to the beautiful way these stories are told.
Below are a few viewpoints from renowned artists and philosophers for you to reflect upon
Art empowers our faith in the nobility of man (Humanism)
“Art is a lie that makes us realize truth, at least the truth that is given us to understand” – Pablo Picasso
One of the most powerful shift resulted out of Renaissance period is that the Church was never a responsible source for their behavior and beliefs towards God and fellow men and that they themselves are responsible for the actions. The School of Athens by Raphael remains one of the powerful representation of this shift in human history and also embodies the classical spirit of Renaissance
The creation of beauty is art
“Love of beauty is taste. The creation of beauty is art” – Ralph Waldo, poet
When it comes to art, some may say that not all art is beautiful, that, in fact, it should not be beautiful, always. Beauty is what you make of it, what your preference is, what calls to your heart, soul, and mind.
What is beauty in art? – Beauty is what we see as characteristic and harmonious.
Whatever different reactions art will about inside you, it is clear that the explanation is complicated and definitive. Every piece of art, whether a painting, a vase or a statue, will have different colors, lines, and textures which will appeal to your soul and heart.
Art is freedom in every sense
“Art is meant to disturb. Science reassures” – Georges Braque, painter
The value of freedom in our creative expression cannot be overstated. What about aestheticizing violence? What about creating art in gigantic forms? What about choosing topics that are controversial? Different expressive media have a tendency to attract different personalities. Phillipe Perrin, known for his huge artworks revolving around the subjects of evil and crime, chooses subjects that have the power to instil immediate shock and presents them in a bold way that ensures they do.
One of Perrin’s famous works, Bloodymary, blends the line between theatre, sculpture, and performance art through the lens of murder. The artist uses unconventional medium and subject to place the viewer face to face with images inexorably tied to modern violence, subtly aestheticizing the violence in art. The true meaning of art can be multifarious, but the purpose of art is met when such artists like Perrin uses art in innovative and unconventional ways.
Art is the most intense mode of individualism
“Art is either plagiarism or revolution” – Paul Gauguin, painter
Famous artist Paul Gauguin once written – “Gauguin once written – “One must always feel the plane, the wall; tapestries need no perspective”
Paul Gauguin’s art, style, and legacy reflected strongly in his artworks and often dismantled the traditional definition of art. Gauguin was one of a few ordinary men that were able to leave mundane life to realize and fulfill a dream – to become an artist.
Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going? by Paul Gauguin is a great example of individualism where Gauguin said to read from right to left instead of from left to right – which in fact provides an entirely different perspective to the reader, which itself shows the true power and meaning of art
Art shifts realism into reality
“Pop Art looks out into the world. It doesn’t look like a painting of something; it looks like the thing itself.” – Roy Lichtenstein
We’re living in a time where our beliefs and messages must be braver and rendered more boldly than ever before. Popular culture was shrouding everything in the 1950’s and 60’s in America, and maintaining the status quo became more important than ever. The power of pop art has been emerging since then and continuously breaking all conformist perspectives and definitions of art
Whereas abstract artists sought to let the medium control the image, such as in Pollock’s drops of paint, Pop Artists went beyond realism into reality.
Art is a personal act of courage
“Art is a personal act of courage” – Seth Godin
Courage is more important than creativity. Great art comes from the heart, doesn’t come from doing what you’re told. The mesmerizing charm of a great work of art doesn’t come from what is painted on the canvas. Rather, it comes from what was in the artist’s heart while he was painting. Franz Krueger’s The Parade auf Opernplatzis a great example of that. Krueger shows us that true art can be created only through courage, the strength of character, and determination. The meaning of art implies a personal and open proliferation of your thoughts.
Art embodies power and luster of color
“Color is my day-long obsession, joy and torment” – Claude Monet
Colors are powerful. Doesn’t matter what you might be creating now – a painting, or a powerpoint presentation, or an illustration – your eyes must be straying over a palette, splashed with many colors, choosing the right one to add to your work. To a sensitive soul, the impact of a perfect color combination is deeper and intensely moving.
Visual art always played an important role for artists to convey the life, luster, and power of life through colors
Art is attitude
“Art, freedom and creativity will change society faster than politics”- Victor Pinchuk
Art has taken a different dimension to think, feel and evoke thoughts in the people that view it with an open mind. Art represents the attitude either of an artist or of a belief system. Street art is often considered as vandalism, but it is executed with purpose, design, technique and intention. Street art heightens our experience of the visual landscape outside museum walls.
Art is the highest form of hope
“Art is not a thing; it is a way.” Elbert Hubbard, artist
Art can move us to tears. Beautiful art can bring tears of joy when we see a painting, sculpture or photograph of people or creatures experiencing things we want to experience. Experiencing such heart-warming feelings about it encourages us to hope for the same thing for ourselves.
Mutiny of Colours, A Project of Love, Peace and Unity by Iranian Street Artists is one great example. The powerful messages of peace, love, and hope in a country torn apart by internal conflicts are represented by Iranian street artists through their art, and mostly these works grow in all endless direction, both metaphorically, conceptually and physically
Art is You
“Art is anything you can get away with”- Andy Warhol
Art helps us to complete our own unformed thoughts and ideas. We have an ‘aha’ moment when we see a piece of art that perfectly captures a feeling or thought we have had that we couldn’t express. When this happens, we have gained a piece of new knowledge through the art that we can now communicate to ourselves and to others. This way the best possible definition of art is YOU.
Art is discovery and exploration
“Art is a discovery and development of elementary principles of nature into beautiful forms suitable for human use”- Frank Lloyd Wright
Is it not more remarkable when a natural talent emerges from nothingness to produce a work of art with an organic honesty that might have been wiped out by years of training in established structures, conventions, and accepted wisdom?
One such unlikely place was a tax collector’s office in Paris, and its unlikely talent came in the form of a Lavalborn son of a plumber named Henri Rousseau. The majority of Rousseau’s life is somewhat cloudy, and with good reason—it is wholly unexceptional.
The Snake Charmer by Henri Rousseau is a dreamlike depiction of mysterious human and animal forms in a jungle scene. This work is a testament to the attention Rousseau received from prominent artists during his time.
Art empowers the heart of people
“Art is not what you see, but what you make others see.” – Edgar Degas
When activists are showing images of children suffering from poverty or oppression in their campaigns, this is the art pulling the heartstrings of society’s elite and powerful to make changes. Such moments truly validate the existence and definition of art
When photographers publish the photos of war-torn areas, it catches the attention of masses whose hearts reach out for those who need help. When the artist creates great music and movies, it entertains people around the world. This is art, making a difference in society.
‘What is art?’— one question continuously steers educators, performers, practitioners and philosophers to engage in deep analysis. But no matter what the definition of art may be, the experience it delivers finally matters, and probably one reason it has been around us for as long as humans have existed. Whether or not we are aware of it, we allow art to affect our lives one way or another.
You may not know it, but your daily existence can be much more colourful with the presence and influence of art, and it only gets better once you allow your own creativity and imagination take a turn for good.
So go ahead and open yourself up to art. It will be worth the change.