Art critic John Yau answers the question "why can't we see her eyes?"
Making pictures can sometimes seem like a silly way to make a living. Doctors and nurses we can not obviously live with out. Roofers and car mechanics, plumbers and film stars are doing important jobs that keep the world tipped and spinning on its axis and there is no denying it.
I read somewhere that the great figurative artist Alex Katz said that in the early portion of his career he would sometimes wonder if the world really needed one more painting. He went on to say that he stopped asking himself that question because it realized it was never a helpful question to ponder. He just stopped asking himself that one and went on painting.
Clouds of doubt come to all of us from time to time. They are there to push us out of the driver seat of our lives and into the back seat and then quietly pull off the road and park our life in the parking lot of a Costco. It can be the most heroic thing we do to simply begin again. To go on one more day doing that thing that may seem silly, not making us any money and not developing nearly as fast as it should. Please don't stop. Please show up again today and do what only you can do and know that your contribution is important and taking us all to the lives we were born to live.
I think of live music as a sort of spiritual breastfeeding. I had the opportunity to go with my daughter Pearl to a concert featuring three local singer song writers at the Wealthy Street Theater last Friday. It was wonderful to sit back and soak in song after song all done so well and with such passion and grace. While the artist is singing the whole room is swept up into the experience together. It was as if we were sharing in a meal together that evening, song after song.
I have been in the process of working with a group of musicians for now two years. We call ourselves The Wealthy Orphans. We all have busy lives. Some of us have children, full time jobs, and various other commitments and responsibilities and yet we make regular time to get together and practise playing our music. When we go out to perform we want to be able to deliver the goods. When ever we perform we pray that God plays through us so that the people who are there will get what ever they may need that night. I I believe he does this through us if we ask.
Jesus told us that "We do not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Father" I think that one big way this happens is through the arts. It is thourgh creative events that God's life and breath, food and nourishment is imparted to us. It goes far beyond just being entertained and right into the very depths of what it means to be a human straddling heaven and earth.
(You can sample The Wealthy Orphans offerings here.)