Monday, December 6, 2010

The Arts

What is art? Why do we create it and what defines it? The diversity of different kinds of art has evolved so much over centuries that it can be almost anything. Art roughly began 40,000 years ago and in Africa there has been even earlier evidence of art. It is prehistoric and one of the most ancient methods of story telling or communication. Even though art can be a wide range of things it will still always be the creations and modes of expression made to influence and affect whomever views it. Art makes you think, feel, and can stay with you forever. It can bring someone to tears, make them happy, or shock them. With many types of art beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Some people may only think the works of  Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo, or other Renaissance painters to be "real" art while others value the originality of modern artists like Andy Warhol and Jackson Pollock. It is common that when an individual views a piece of art or considers an aesthetic unappealing they don't think of it as art. Various types of art or aesthetics are viewed differently by everyone it is about personal preference and opinion. A person's life experiences can impact their perception when they view a piece of art. When determining what is art it is amazing because there is no right answer.

I can appreciate almost all types of art and at the same time there are certain artists and genres I can do without. One of my favorite artists is Natalie Shau from Vilnius, Lithuainia who uses a combination of manipulating pictures, 3D elements, and digital painting/drawing to create hauntingly beautiful pieces. She is influenced by gothic horror fiction, fairy tales, and classic books. I find her work to be captivating and strange at the same time. Shau's pieces have been on the pages of French Vogue and on several album covers for famous musicians. One of my favorite pieces is titled Greensward Grey and it shows a very somber scene of a girl reaching into the ground towards what appears to be a corpse. From the color scheme to the subject matter it haunts me just as much as I find it to be beautiful. Her style of work is not something I know very much about or understand because it is mostly digital. It is not like a oil painting on canvas where even if you do not know much about painting you have a pretty good guess how it was made. That is another thing that drew me to her work because I find myself wondering what the creation process is. Looking at certain art can affect my mood, make me think about it for days, or inspire me and I give a lot of credit to the artists who can instill such a reaction in me. Art is something I enjoy very much and it will always be a part of my life.

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