What is Art Anyway?

A beautiful postcard from Shannon Ganshorn’s swap, all the way from Holland, to brighten my day. Thankyou Annemielie. I love the colours, and the quote is perfect. ‘Art is about Mystery’. So many people say they don’t ‘get’ art. There is nothing to ‘get’ as far as I can see. It is always about communicating something.

For me it is an expression of joy in whatever way she emerges in the work I am making. I use a lot of colour, expressive active lines (alright, messy in some people’s books), and often a lot of movement and texture. For others art can be political, cathartic, religious, meditative, angry, peaceful, confrontational, erotic… you name it it’s out there. There are as many styles as there are people!

Mine is about joy. This a deliberate choice on my part. There is a lot of pain and ugliness out there, it gets too much press. I think it has become an obscene obsession to present cruelty and violence as entertainment. I have no problem with wrongs being exposed to be put right, and injustices addressed, but not for vicarious enjoyment from our comfortable lives.

I think we need to be woken up to really see the beauty around us, really appreciate our world and the people and creatures we share it with. Then we will be more careful of each other and this wonderful place we live in. Our lives are so short, let’s make our brief span the best it can be. Tell people when they make you feel good, share your own spark with those you come in contact with. Appreciate your surroundings, practicing a level of gratitude that makes your heart feel full. Art can do all this too, making someone stop, pay attention and hopefully take something warm with them when they go.

Want to make art of your own? This looks like a great way to take up the challenge. I am trying to have more of a creative conversation with others this year by participating in various art swaps as I come across them in my travels. It is great fun getting ‘happy mail’ in my letterbox, in contrast to all those bills! Take a look at my cheery letterbox here.


About joslittlepictures

I frequently have trouble trying to decide how to describe myself. Am I an artist who makes jewellery too, or am I a jewellery artist who draws, paints, makes prints,takes photos, makes gardens,plays with book binding,and occasionally working in stone and mosaic? Then there is my delight in words as well. And I love cooking. What I don't do so well is housework, constant order, or keeping to schedules. I make lists, often starting with something I have completed just so I can start by ticking something off!
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