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The Sacredness of Art

Posted 01-29-09 at 04:44 AM by RedHairedWitch
The Sacredness of Art

I was in a committed relationship for a number of years with a very skilled scientist, in his field of work; everything must always be under the microscope. Everything must be dissected by the power of 3, nothing is sacred in science. As an academic and scientist, he had to maintain a critical mindset. This was something he, obviously, brought home with him.

I, on the other hand am a very artistic person. Artistic people think with their heart before their mind, we feel everything very strongly and do have a tendency to be hypersensitive; everything is sacred in the world of art. I'd show him a piece of writing I had slaved over for days, and the first thing he'd do is pull out the big red pen and correct my grammar.
"That's not why I showed it to you!" Id cry "Give it back if you're just going to pick it apart!"
"Then why did you show it to me? And how can you expect me to NOT correct your bad grammar?" was his confused and angry reply.

One day in an attempt to explain it to him I said, "Art is cutting your self open, peeling back your skin and showing the whole world what lies beneath. When someone shows you their beating, bleeding heart, you don't just walk up, poke a finger between their ribs and say `I think you need to quit smoking and exercise more'".

This is something difficult for some people to understand. Art is sacred, its your baby, it IS who you are.

Let us say we all were a group of people who were sitting around a campfire, talking, joking, debating and all that good stuff.
One of us decided to play us a song on his guitar. And just as he finished his song, before any of the expected applause, I chose that moment, in front of everyone, to politely critique his fingering technique and suggest that the tempo chosen is inappropriate for the theme of the song.
The musician would be terribly humiliated, quite likely angry and go on the defensive. And of course, a few of the other musicians sitting around the campfire would likely give me a piece of their mind.

Sharing art, poetry, music, etc is something that makes us feel very venerable, very exposed. It can be easy to get our back up at the slightest bit of criticism because of that. To us, our art is sacred, as sacred as any memorized ancestor saga is to a Skald. When we share our art, we share a part of ourselves, and it can be easy to mistake criticism of our art as criticism for ourselves.

Artists must remember that there are many who do not see it this way, and do not understand how painful it can be to share and NOT have it critiqued, let alone be critiqued. Perhaps we need to grow a little more of a tough shell?

And those of us who are more academic than artistic must remember that one's heart and soul is poured forth when we create art.

Shall we assume then, that if you wish to have your art discussed and critiqued you shall ask for discussion. And if not, we shall refrain from the critique and stick to the applause?
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  1. Old
    ginniebean's Avatar
    Life is Art.
    Posted 01-30-09 at 06:42 AM by ginniebean ginniebean is offline
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