Fragmento del libro
What Art Can Do
Though each artist has his or her own personallimitations, the potential of art is unlimited. Art can be anything we want it to be. Contemporary artists can create their own formal and nonrepresentational worlds exploring the properties of materials, visual effects, and design concepts. An artist can hold a mirror up to the personal or the sociopolitical world, unmasking pleasures and tragedies. The artist can also serve to remind us of the sacredness of life and create a picture of our transformative and spiritual potential.
Art reveals the truth about human character, from the unflinching self-portraits of Rembrandt to Goya's portraits of the grandiloquently superficial royal family. Art shows the entire spectrum of character, from shallow and pathological ugliness to radiant and mystical beauty. A walk through an art museum that has objects from various world cultures can foster appreciation of the diversity of humanity and the creative imagination.
Art can amplify compassion and sensitivity by sharing deep feelings. Listening to music such as Beethoven's Ninth Symphony can cause people to enter ecstatic states. Art can point to the many levels of reality-the physical body, the emotions, the intellect, intuition, and spirit. Art can make visible the subtle-energy bodies, as in the paintings of saints with halos and auras, and provide a home for fantastic demonic and luminous angelic beings. Art can show the importance of respect and collaboration among people, as in the AlDS-quilt project.
Any orchestra or dance company requires this kind of creative collaboration as well. Art can demonstrate the intricate interconnectedness of the web of life, as in magnificent landscapes or the cosmological mandalas from Native Americans, Australian Aborigines, and Tibetan Buddhists. Art can portray human struggle and suffering but can also uplift and heal the soul. Art can point to the transcendental source of wisdom. By doing all these things and more, art can encourage and nurture what is best in us and give people joy and hope. If we cannot envision a better world, we cannot create one.