Art … What is it?

There is no other subject today which generates as much confusion as Art. Some say Art has to educate people … it has to create awareness!

Education…Awareness! What are these? What is their meaning? What kind of education are they talking about? What kind of awareness do they mean?

To know the answers for these, we have to go to the basic roots of the subject. The first question is…What is the purpose of art ? Is it to entertain the people? Or is it for enlightenment?

If it is purely for entertaining then there won’t be much scope for educating the people and evoking awareness in them. If not, if it is only for education and awareness then what about entertainment.

If there is no entertainment then what is the use of art? The basic purpose of all arts is … to entertain, to relax the people who are stressed with day to day survival. If any art is not achieving this basic purpose then how do we call it art?

Today’s art … is it achieving this purpose? Is it entertaining the people? If it is not entertaining then is it not losing its purpose? If an artist is not able to entertain the people how will they be attracted to him? If they are not attracted, how will they get educated by his work? Or get awareness by his art?

So the key point is … if you want to create awareness in people first you have to attract them to your work. It’s possible only by entertaining them. To entertain them, your work has to be in their wave length. This is the key. But the problem also lies here.

You want to express something. You have started to communicate it on canvas or in some other visual form. You are able to understand what you are creating because you know about it.

But, is it communicating to others? That’s the question.

To communicate your feelings to others you need strong technical skills. In other words call it …Literacy. A man who is not having education may have a very good imagination about nature’s beauty. But to write about it he needs good command on language. But it’s not possible for him because he is not educated; he doesn’t have command of language skills.

Like that artists also face the same problem.

To communicate to viewers what they feel, they require sound knowledge in visual language. But in the name of modern, abstract or other names of art they ignore the visual language. They stopped practising sketching, they do not possess in-depth knowledge of color and composition and they started to believe in the emotional state of mind. They think they will express their feelings strongly with emotional mind instead of using strong language skills! How is this possible?

Result … their art is not reaching common people who are not interested in non representative art. Then these artists started to say their art is not for common people, it is for enlightened. Who are those enlightened? A question!

Do those elite people know about the language of art? If they don’t know about it how will they understand abstract form which is non-representational? To understand realistic or representative art you don’t need to know the language of art. There we are seeing what we are familiar with in everyday life. But to understand abstract form you must know the language of art because it deals with elements of art and principles of composition.

O.K. Put it aside.

Why artists has to learn Sketching, Color , Composition and some more things? Why they are important for him to evolve as a creative person?

Sketching will give observation, observation leads to concentration, next imagination will start.

As a whole these three lead to creativity. Creativity is the key to survival as an artist.

Next … Color. To understand color you have to understand Nature and its beauty, both inside and outside. This kind of in depth study about the nature will help you to understand the essence of life. Study of composition will give you the insight to balance things through harmony and unity. Then you will realise how art and life are intertwined.

Art emerged for that reason only. To create life on canvas you have to understand many intricacies of life. Here life means everything around us. You have to see them as a whole. When you see it as a whole you know everything about it. If something goes wrong you know how to fix it. You will also implement the same thinking pattern in your day to day life also. Result… you are able to make your life joyful.

Being an artist means being a joyful person. Becoming a true artist means being enlightened. No Misery. No Pain. Even if they are there … its momentary. You always feel life is immortal. That’s the gift of being a true artist.

My last words …

Art has to reach to all in the society. It should not be confined to a few people. If you want common people to enjoy your work and if you want to develop a passion for art in them, paint with a language which they can understand. Just if you want to enlighten your self, then paint with whatever language you are interested in. Choice is personal.

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