Celebrating our varied creativity

Kathmandu:

If you don’t understand art, don’t worry. No one really does. True and real art is as hypothetical as God. You know God exists but you don’t know whether God’s a He, She or It. The perspective to art changes with every individual and there are different genres of art and different artists trying to attain artistic salvation. But this is an impossible feat. We should be happy as after artistic perfection, there is no creativity.

We all need to admit that one of the major break throughs in modern art was Impressionism. But even with this movement, artists had different approaches. Monet believed in colours, light and shadows. Van Gogh had his power strokes. Cezanne believed in the solidity of forms and Seurat had his pointillism. There are people who still paint and enjoy Impressionism. Should we call them old fashioned?

Today we celebrate conceptual art. So do we tend to feel that works that are created in other styles is less of an art? Let’s not forget that when Seurat realised that everything is composed of tiny elements amalgamated together and wanted to imply the theory in his paintings, he was going conceptual. Let’s not forget creativity always needs concepts. Any form of art is conceptual. A landscapist needs to worry about the composition on his canvas — placement of trees, the mountains and the hills. These are all but concepts.

We need to realise there is not one universal art. There are thousands of genres of creativity. And one style of painting can never be compared to another. Painting in a traditional style is not going backwards. Abstraction is not the ultimate form of expression. The world of abstraction starts with abstraction and ends with abstraction. We can not afford to discard or disrespect one form of art if we think that some other genre of art is in fad.

To understand and enjoy a painting, we need to understand the artist’s perspective to his art. If the work is super realistic, it would be wrong of us to think the details were not needed. On the contrary, details should be enjoyed and the quest for perfection appreciated.

Conceptual art is the in thing. We enjoy the thoughts and intelligence of the artists. But it would be wrong of the conceptual artists to disrespect other genres of art. There are artists who just believe in creating visually stimulating works. And we enjoy them. It would be wrong for artists creating in other styles to think less about conceptual creations. Conceptual creators believe artists need to worry about more issues while creating than just colours, forms or texture on canvas. They tell stories, they reflect society and they mock at bad elements.

Picasso once said, “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain one when we grow up.” We are all artists because artists create and we all can do that. Painting a perfect apple could be the quest for artistic bliss for a school child, while creating a visually balanced perfect abstract piece could be for an abstract expressionist.

The point is we don’t have one universal school of art but many genres of creativity. Artwise, we are rich and varied. Let us celebrate this.