Monday, 13 June 2011

Is art important to you?

I have been doing a lot of philosophical thinking lately I suppose. I have started many blog posts and they will be published after my exams (ending Wednesday wooo!) but I was revising and thought about how all my posts so far have been about art in its conventional forms; Painting, Photography, sculpture, film etc.
My last exam is on epic literature and I discovered that we need art. Although I have previously talked about why humanity decided to pick up two rocks and bang them together to make an interesting patter 40,000 years; I only described the effect of that action. It simply gave us the ability to think and challenge the world around us as we realized we can affect it.

But why??

I would consider epic literature as art, I would consider all literature as art; I would eve n consider games as art. All employ creative license and all have an intentional effect on an audience by one; or in some cases collective body of mindsets.

Today we would not function without art. Advertisement drives our increasingly globalized culture but it also drives us as individuals. How many people would say they could not cope without their gaming console? How many people look forward to going to the theatre? And how many people watch television?
The epic literature I have been reading has a diversity of aims, objectives and outcomes but one general theme is religion and the role of the mortals and the immortals. Humanity understood that they would one day die; but they aspired to immortality. However the immortality they aspired to is a abstracted immortality, such as being remembered by your descendants or your countrymen through statues, stories or rumor. Ancient Philosophy states that it is in fact in some instances preferable to be mortal than immortal. This is because with being immortal, those things that the mortals strive for become pointless. They lack the need for selflessness and rationality. As well as relationships and securing your legacy in your children; Cultural values so close to these people. They helped them secure their position in this world. Much how other religious imagery has impacted on cultures and people. But religion to many isn’t as important as it once was to ancestors.
Asserting cultural values still occurs today. The Film Milk illustrates this demonstrating the struggle many had to go through to be accepted as gay members of society. This type is designed to inspire us to think and challenge how we think. Or be a memorial for past views that now are alien and decadent. Fundamentally art can be entertaining and educative simultaneously. If these films weren't entertaining, would anyone watch them? Would anyone remember them?  appearing; reminding us of a social position. 

Despite this much art is there for entertainment or aesthetic. Many strive for a deeper statement to be resident but equally many do not. The power of art could be purely to allow us a release from the normal lives we need. Kick back and enjoy your evening. If you’re watching tv, a film, playing a game, reading a book, looking at a painting or through a magazine – Art is important to you.

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