Tuesday, September 2, 2014

All Sorts of People

What defines an artist?

from Grolier's The Book of Knowledge, published in Canada in the early 20th century:

"In the autumn some people can call up clearly in their mind's eye the vision of what a certain landscape looked like in the spring. It is natural for them to notice these things, and to make these comparisons or associations. When they are talking to people, they do not attend very particularly to the tones of the voice, and they are perhaps not particularly interested in what is being said, but they are watching and remembering and comparing what other people never notice at all, even in the faces of people that they love - the movement of the eyelids, the little tricks of the lips, the poise and movement of the head, and so on.

These people are artists, drawers, painters, sculptors, architects, and decorators. It is unfortunately true that the artistic people usually despise the scientific people because they care so little for beauty, and often make such ugly things; and the scientific people, in their turn, despise the artistic people for caring so much about the mere surface of things, and being so little interested in what lies behind them.

But when men grow wiser they will learn how foolish all this is, and that both these kinds of people are necessary, for it takes all sorts of people to make a world."

Hmmmm...what defines an artist to you? Discuss...


Rewind: A new series, with periodic reposting of an edited version of a previous post.  This was originally posted in 2010.


Kathryn Dyche said...

It's funny that my husband comes from a science background and I now call myself an artist. They say opposites attract!

For me true art is about passion, about uncovering pieces of yourself one creative stroke at a time.

Jo Murray said...

I'm not entirely sure that there is such a gulf between the two. Both have enquiring minds.

Parabolic Muse said...

To me, the only thing that defines an artist is a desire to organize and express a vision, using any medium. So, a particularly engaging speaker could be considered an artist. someone who seeks to arrange their furniture not only for function, but for aesthetics. A person who feels that putting colors together well is important. I think these are all artistic endeavors.