Pearls from artists* # 158August 26, 2015
* an ongoing series of quotations – mostly from artists, to artists – that offers wisdom, inspiration, and advice for the sometimes lonely road we are on.
It is the artist’s innate sensitivity that makes him special and different from other professionals. Society expects the artist to be more compassionate and understanding in order to bring out that which will enlighten, inspire and encourage life in his work. His vocation should not just be art for art’s sake.
Where the average person sees an old beat-up shark, the artist sees a symbol of beauty in aging and imagines bringing out those qualities that the shark has sheltered over the ages by means of artistic creation. To the intelligent and sensitive artist, the homeless man lying on the street corner is a symbol that reminds us of what we, as a society, should do to better our living.
Sensitivity comes into play when leaves that appear to the general viewer to be uniformly green are seen by the sensitive artist to be different shades, tones and nuances of green. Without sensitivity, special and important characteristics of nature will be out of sight and out of reach to the viewing layman. Only the obvious, the average and the common will reveal themselves to the insensitive artist. The endurance of certain works will depend on what the artist has captured with the help of his sensitivity and because of the ideas behind the work.
Samuel Adoquei in Origin of Inspiration: Seven Short Essays for Creative People
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