There’s a part of me that believes art to be a primordial aspect of the human condition. Art inspires, art is a way of achieving greatness, of building a better world. Art turns strangers into friends. Without art, without artists, we wouldn’t be ourselves anymore.
Because I feel that within the confines of any artistic form of expression, we allow ourselves to wear a mask. The artist hides behind words or paints or brushes. And he feels safe. He can be anyone he wants to be. His freedom is limitless. And he plays this bizarre game of hide and seek with the rest of the world, constantly changing the rules, until he decides – maybe on a mere subconscious level – to be himself, thinking that people will never find out.
Okay, so let’s be clear about this: reading is not necessary. It does not satisfy any need, it’s not as if there’s this primordial aspect of humanity that it defines and explores. It does make you smarter, more culture, more empathetic, but all of these are optional. You can be dumb and live and long and happy life.
That being said, in a world where people read, on average, a book per year, here are some incredibly dumb reasons to read…
“if it doesn’t come bursting out of you in spite of everything, don’t do it. unless it comes unasked out of your heart and your mind and your mouth and your gut, don’t do it.”
― Charles Bukowski
Passion. Defined as a strong and barely controllable emotion. Fire. Defined as a destructive burning of something. Sounds pretty bad now, doesn’t it? But, if you think about it for a while, creation is a destructive process. Or is it the other way around?
But I do wonder, did you find your passion? Are you sure? Is it the thing that controls you? Make you want to jump out of the bed in the morning? The thing you can’t live without?
The artist. A solitary genius. A creator of beauty so sacred that we can’t help but love and fear at the same time.
“He’s a true artist,” we find ourselves saying, and it’s these words put together that conjure up the vision of someone whose inexorable destiny was to create, even at the expense of having to endure a lifetime of humility and frustration and social alienation.
The true artist is often misunderstood. He’s utterly and inconsolably alone with his art. And it is that art, that we all revere, that we’d think of as a bridge, that art is actually a wall. The artist hides behind this wall, refusing to face reality.
But times are changing. The artist has little choice in the matter: he either dies an artist or lives long enough to see himself become a creative entrepreneur.