…on why Mel and I should have flunked Art History

More on art? Yes. David Hockney has re-awakened my creative soul!

The conspicuous incongruity of a Roman garden fresco as the preferential image for this article is not lost on me; as colour, subject matter and placement machinated and conspired en masse to announce the wealth of the commissioner. Mel could lecture at length on the subject, from her dissertation research.

“The best of beauty is a finer charm than skill in surfaces, in outlines, or rules of art can ever teach, namely, a radiation from the work of art of human character, – a wonderful expression through stone, or canvas, or musical sound, of the deepest and simplest attributes of our nature, and therefore most intelligible at last to those souls which have these attributes. In the sculptures of the agrees, in the mastery of the Romans, and in the pictures of the Tuscan and Venetian masters, the highest charm is the universal language they speak. A confession of moral nature, of pure, of love and hope, breathes for them all.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Art” 1841

This is one of the most beautiful passages I have ever read, and arouses feelings borne out of an inherent talent for drawing and painting, which I have been fortunate to realise.

Both Mel and I would – and should! – have failed Art History upon espousing the abstruse – and equitable! – realisation of the human condition and its inspiration of works steeped in the sensation of emotion and individual circumstance and surroundings; additionally, not confined to the life-affirming; yet, capturing corresponding exigence. This epiphany may have come at a cost to my first degree; elucidating the environs of the creator, and how these stirred his choices: use of colour; palate knife versus paintbrush; chiaroscuro?; however, it is precisely with this intuitive and human eye that I categorically maintain all art should be received, for only in this manner can we distinguish incentive.

For one who is susceptible to humanity, whilst immune to the trappings of “culture” is the finest and most enlightened critic.

National Gallery, anyone?

5 thoughts on “…on why Mel and I should have flunked Art History

  1. Your post reminds me of how and why I became a “Creative”. Emerson expresses himself so beautifully as he always does. I remember one of my last semesters in college I was enrolled in both Physics and Calculus. It was a tough one and it took every bit of strength to successfully complete them to the standards of which I set for myself. However, once a week I “escaped” and sat in a class for 2 hours that made me realize that my left side of the brain (Physics, Calculus, science, etc..) was about to meet the right side and it would be love at first sight!! So similar to you and Geth. 🙂 The 120 minutes of beautiful music and seeing the masterpieces from artists throughout our world’s history rejuvenated my weary mind and calmed my restless soul. “Art of the Western World” brought great joy to me and opened a portal to not only stop there but to indulge in the beauty of music, drama, and the written word. Now as I get older the appreciation for artists such as Hockney, Vettriano, Dali, Picasso, Monet, Hemingway, Bronte, Dickinson, Mozart to name a few, Lol, has become an obsession. An obsession that I share on a daily basis to all who are willing to listen rather than just hear. For art, to me, is the silent expression of one’s identity, desires, and experiences. We truly know people around us by ” listening” to their individual expression regardless of what form it takes. Thank you so much for inviting me to your blogs my friend… You are amazing! xxxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are a talented Artist, Doreen, because you have opened yourself the spontaneous “truth” of art: that it finds a hearer, without warning, who is not listening for it; that once one engaging energy to seek said truth, or “sculpt” one’s talent for purposes of performance, compensation or “culture,” art has failed. You achieve with your art what few can: to reach the beholder; the individual, no matter who he may be. Too often, I find myself in galleries overhearing pretentious people talk about brush strokes, composition or colour; with nary an inclination of the impetus for such work…xxx


  2. This is very interesting Lols and your fancy man certainly seems to suggest the importance of the experience of art. Hey, also my first ever name-check in a blog!!

    Sent from my iPad


    Liked by 1 person

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