At a recent book club gathering (which just happened to be reading my latest book), our discussion expanded to include the art of writing and, even further, the value and importance of art and expression. Here are a couple of the more salient points of our discussion.
First, we should define art differently. More than brush strokes on a canvas or words on a page, art should encompass anything that moves people in meaningful ways. I’ve been moved by well-run meetings, waiters who seem both invisible and ever-present, and ideas that inform my perspective and educate my tendencies. There is art in moving the human ball forward, and we should all be better artists. For more on this, I recommend Seth Godin’s latest, The Icarus Deception.
Second, for whom do we create our art? Should the market dictate expression? I understand that angst-ridden teenage vampire fiction is selling well, but does that mean I should slide off into that ditch? Certainly an awareness of audience and market should inform an artist’s pursuit, but to what extent? On the other hand, if art is found somewhere between creator and audience, but the creation is never experienced by even an audience of one, is it art?
What is your art and how can you use it to move the human ball forward?