Tuesday, October 11, 2011

L'art pour l'art

my latest painting - it is not finished but close.


Writing poetry, prose or really any form of creative writing paired with a photo, painting or drawing makes a lot of sense to me. I find that I am less blocked. I am certain that my very best writing has always been prompt driven. There are times when I feel that without a visual clue my writing is flat. A prompt extracts from me a deeper more emotional piece, then I would be capable of producing otherwise. 

In my weekly painting class, we have what is called open studio. There are only about 3-5 students and our instructor. This setting is ideal because we can work on whatever we choose.  Our instructor floats between us, teaching us various techniques so that we can learn to paint what we desire. I love this freedom. Best of all, I am creating things that matter to me.

Whether writing or painting, it all seems to come from the same place for me. While I am creating something, nothing seems to bother me. I find my zone and I cruise comfortably in it. Before I even realize hours seem like minutes and the sense of contentment is almost overwhelming. I love creating. It was what I was born to do. I think if I couldn’t create something every day, I would be swallowed up in a depression with an epoxy grip. On the other hand, to create art for art’s sake is pretty wonderful too. Sometimes I start something and I have no idea where I am going with it or what I am doing, it really doesn’t matter in the end, I am relaxed and at peace.

"L'art pour l'art" (translated as "art for art's sake") is credited to Théophile Gautier (1811–1872), who was the first to adopt the phrase as a slogan. Gautier was not, however, the first to write those words: they appear in the works of Victor Cousin,[1] Benjamin Constant, and Edgar Allan Poe. For example, Poe argues in his essay "The Poetic Principle" (1850), that
We have taken it into our heads that to write a poem simply for the poem's sake [...] and to acknowledge such to have been our design, would be to confess ourselves radically wanting in the true poetic dignity and force: — but the simple fact is that would we but permit ourselves to look into our own souls we should immediately there discover that under the sun there neither exists nor can exist any work more thoroughly dignified, more supremely noble, than this very poem, this poem per se, this poem which is a poem and nothing more, this poem written solely for the poem's sake.[2]


1 comment:

Tumblewords: said...

Gorgeous painting - I love the colors, the depth and the zen-ish style!