Lately, things have been emotionally tumultuous, and it’s just starting to calm. I’m not going to say too much, but I cried. I cried a lot. Everything’s okay now, and it’s given me plenty of food for thought.
As I mentioned before, my professor got me thinking about the world’s great artists. As he put it, they weren’t exactly the happiest people. One of my favorite Italian painters, Caravaggio, was always in legal trouble. There was van Gogh and his ear. As for Picasso, let’s just say I only enjoy work from his Blue Period. Having just gone through something that felt akin to emotional bifurcation, there’s a definite connection between the pain we endure and the art we produce.
It doesn’t always have to be hellish pain. It can be a bad case of the Mondays, traffic, taxes, that one person at work, etc. The daily grind wears on us all, not to mention all the emotions we keep bottled up inside. So, what’s a person to do with all this crap? He or she tries to restore order. Unfortunately, this can be dang hard to do. When your environment doesn’t change as quickly as you want, there’s your art.
I think that’s the escapism of art. Life feels like its lost all control, so the artist seeks refuge in his or her craft. But, it’s more than that: there’s a certain wonder here. How can people create such beauty from all the pain they experience? Honestly, I believe its God’s gift to us. This world can be a dark, cruel place. In His infinite love, He has given us the ability to create beauty from our messes. We pour in our wounds and out comes something beautiful. (Of course, the specific definitions of art and beauty differ from person to person, but I’ll not discuss it now.)