“We were all born artists, the trick, is to continue to be one when we grow up.” Pablo Picasso
Beware of history and word origins, you might learn something!
Our current definition of art is based on a Eurocentric view. “The modern use of art is derived from the 18th century philosophy of fine art and its focus on artworks that were largely created for wealthy elite, mainly the church and court (Brown and Dissanayaka).” Thus, “fine art” came to be known as an elite process whose product could only be obtained by a small percentage of the population. This is why we have a tiered view of the arts today.
Art is intertwined with all of life (can you FEEL my excitement?!).
Prior to this art worldview, most cultures did not have a specific word for art. This was not because art was unimportant. In fact, the opposite is true; art was so incredibly important in early traditions that it was a part of each person’s daily lives and every important ritual and ceremony. Art did not need a separate term; it was intertwined with all of life. Dance, music, and imagery were not separated; they were of supreme importance in all aspects of the life cycle; birth to death.
Have you ever been to a gallery/opening/studio and felt insecure talking about art?
This European distinction has led to the weight that we feel with the terms art and artist today. Additionally, this piece of history is directly related to why we have a tendency to rank the arts for legitimacy and power with one another.
Hey, YOU are an artist! Yup, you, I promise.
I truly believe we all have a visual language that we are all born artists, the trick, as Pablo Picasso famously stated, it to continue to be one when we grow up. We need desperately to reclaim our creative selves, to be kind to that intrinsic creative nature, and to nurture the creativity in others. In re-validating the arts, we must see it as a beautiful beneficial thing as well as an important subject for increased knowledge of self and life.
Over the next few weeks, my blog will get you primed for amazing art-conversations at your next dinner party!
1. How we “see,” body vs brain
2. How we validate what we see
3. How to confidently share YOUR opinions about artwork
4. The tricky situation that “fine art” has gotten us into today.
And we’ll chat about a few of the wild and crazy artists throughout art history so you have a brief idea of what they were trying to do with all of those dots, lines, squares and what not.