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exp:channel:form channel="location" return="topic/what-is-the-purpose-of-art/"
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Session: What Is The Purpose Of Art?
This is a Session within the Topic Culture
 
 
Art is the greatest thing humanity has invented – a chance to scrutinize and celebrate the world through a creative confrontation with reality.
Reach the heart of any topic
– Grasp this issue deeply.
– Find what is valid or insightful about each perspective.
– Is there a way that changes assumptions, that all sides can agree with, and that works at the heart level?
 
Goal
What is true and relevant about each perspective, and how can we bring these together to find our what is meaningful culture?
Your progress:
0 of 4 Perspectives
 
Perspectives & Resources
Perspectives are short paragraphs summarizing any point of view about the Topic. Explore each View and then vote on it.
Would you like to add a Perspective or Resource to this Topic? Go to the Topic development page.
 
"The true work of art is something new and challenging"
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Reach the Heart of a Perspective
Topic: What is the purpose of art?


The true work of art is something new and challenging

The true work of art is something new – it is not to primarily the copy or representation of anything. It may evolve representation, but that is not what makes it a work of art… It is new, startling, and perhaps shattering – and yet it comes to us with a sense of familiarity. We did not know it before, but the moment the poet has shown it to us, we know that, somehow or other, we had always really known it.

Very well. But, frankly, is that the sort of thing the average British citizen gets, or expects to get, when he goes to the theater or reads a book? No, it is not. In the majority of cases, it is not in the least what he expects, or what he wants.
 

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How to Explore a Perspective
Relax, focus. Take a step back and look at the Perspective from all sides. Now, zero in at the center!
 
What is the Bias?
What assumptions does it make? Whose interests does it serve?

What is your Personal Experience?
How does it make you feel? How do your experiences, privileges, and personal interests affect your understanding of it?
Now, enter the heart
▶ Say something good about what you disagree with, even if there are flaws.
▶ Find causes, not symptoms. Ask what lies at the root.
▶ Have respect for people with different views, insights, and priorities!
 
Opinion added by
Visionary {name_l}
on August 10, 2019
 
Visionary
This is the opinion of Dorothy Sayers
"The unique experience of a creative moment in life"
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Reach the Heart of a Perspective
Topic: What is the purpose of art?


The unique experience of a creative moment in life

In the work of art the artist, first of all, says: “I am here and in me life has taken a certain form. My life must not pass till I master its meaning and value. What I have seen and felt and thought and imagined seems to me important: so important that I will try to convey it to you through a common language of symbols and forms, with something of the concentration, some of the intensity, some of the passionate delight that I carry to the highest pitch in myself through the very act of expression.

With the aid of art I give you, in the present, the experience of a lifetime: the potentialities of many lifetimes. These esthetic moments endow life with a new meaning; and these new meanings heighten life with other esthetic moments...
So says the artist. And though the symbols that are used in any culture must, to be understood and experienced, have some common ground, each fresh work of art is unique...With the expression of a true work of art the goodness of life is affirmed, and life itself renewed.
 

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How to Explore a Perspective
Relax, focus. Take a step back and look at the Perspective from all sides. Now, zero in at the center!
 
What is the Bias?
What assumptions does it make? Whose interests does it serve?

What is your Personal Experience?
How does it make you feel? How do your experiences, privileges, and personal interests affect your understanding of it?
Now, enter the heart
▶ Say something good about what you disagree with, even if there are flaws.
▶ Find causes, not symptoms. Ask what lies at the root.
▶ Have respect for people with different views, insights, and priorities!
 
Opinion added by
Visionary {name_l}
on August 07, 2019
 
Visionary
This is the opinion of Lewis Mumford
"Beauty which is acquired at the cost of justice is an abomination"
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Reach the Heart of a Perspective
Topic: What is the purpose of art?


Beauty which is acquired at the cost of justice is an abomination

Beauty which is acquired at the cost of justice is an abomination and should be rejected for its loathsomeness. All values are esteemed only to the extent that they are worthy in the sight of God, for only through the Divine Light is their light seen... The criterion by which we judge beauty is integrity, the criterion by which we judge integrity is truth, and truth is the correspondence of the finite to the infinite, the specific to the general, the cosmos to God.

All things carry a surplus of meaning over being – they mean more than what they are in themselves. Even finite facts stand for infinite meaning. It is as if all things were vibrant with spiritual meaning, and all we try to do in creative art and in good deeds is to intone the secret strain, an aspect of that meaning.
 

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How to Explore a Perspective
Relax, focus. Take a step back and look at the Perspective from all sides. Now, zero in at the center!
 
What is the Bias?
What assumptions does it make? Whose interests does it serve?

What is your Personal Experience?
How does it make you feel? How do your experiences, privileges, and personal interests affect your understanding of it?
Now, enter the heart
▶ Say something good about what you disagree with, even if there are flaws.
▶ Find causes, not symptoms. Ask what lies at the root.
▶ Have respect for people with different views, insights, and priorities!
 
Opinion added by
Visionary {name_l}
on August 07, 2019
 
Visionary
This is the opinion of Abraham Heschel
"The artist must never cease warring with society, to make it more human"
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Reach the Heart of a Perspective
Topic: What is the purpose of art?


The artist must never cease warring with society, to make it more human

The peculiar nature of this responsibility is that he must never cease warring with it, for its sake and for his own. Societies never know it, but the war of an artist with his society is a lover’s war, and he does, at his best, what lovers do, which is to reveal the beloved to himself and, with that revelation, to make freedom real.

The conquest of the physical world is not man’s only duty. He is also enjoined to conquer the great wilderness of himself. The precise role of the artist, then, is to illuminate that darkness, blaze roads through that vast forest, so that we will not, in all our doing, lose sight of its purpose, which is, after all, to make the world a more human dwelling place.
 

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How to Explore a Perspective
Relax, focus. Take a step back and look at the Perspective from all sides. Now, zero in at the center!
 
What is the Bias?
What assumptions does it make? Whose interests does it serve?

What is your Personal Experience?
How does it make you feel? How do your experiences, privileges, and personal interests affect your understanding of it?
Now, enter the heart
▶ Say something good about what you disagree with, even if there are flaws.
▶ Find causes, not symptoms. Ask what lies at the root.
▶ Have respect for people with different views, insights, and priorities!
 
Opinion added by
Visionary {name_l}
on August 07, 2019
 
Visionary
This is the opinion of James Baldwin
 
 
Recommended Resources (Review before voting)
 
 
Text: Technical achievement is not creativity
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Technical achievement is not creativity

You cannot reconcile creativeness with technical achievement. You may be perfect in playing the piano, and not be creative; you may play the piano most brilliantly, and not be a musician. You may be able to handle color, to put paint on canvas most cleverly, and not be a creative painter. You may create a face, an image out of a stone, because you have learned the technique, and not be a master creator. Creation comes first, not technique, and that is why we are miserable all our lives. We have technique – how to put up a house, how to build a bridge, how to assemble a motor, how to educate our children through a system we have learned all these techniques, but our hearts and minds are empty. We are first class machines; we know how to operate most beautifully, but we do not love a living thing. You may be a good engineer, you may be a pianist, you may write in a good style in English or Marathi or whatever your language is, but creativeness is not found through technique. If you have something to say, you create your own style; but when you have nothing to say, even if you have a beautiful style, what you write is only the traditional routine, a repetition in new words of the same old thing. So, having lost the song, we pursue the singer. We learn from the singer the technique of song, but there is no song; and I say the song is essential, the joy of singing is essential. When the joy is there, the technique can be built up from nothing; you will invent your own technique, you won't have to study elocution or style. When you have, you see, and the very seeing of beauty is an art.

J. Krishnamurti, The Book of Life
Notes: When the joy is there, the technique can be built up from nothing; you will invent your own technique, you won't have to study elocution or style. When you have, you see, and the very seeing of beauty is an art.

 
 
Other Resources
 
Document: James Baldwin, The Creative Process

 
 
Conclusion
Ask the impossible question!
What is most important – and true – about each perspective, especially those you disagree with? Taking all this into account, what do you think is most important about meaningful culture?


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