Why is art important?

Why is art important, especially now in our linear-thought trained culture? School efficiently teaches us to gather data and apply it to solve our problems as found tasks. Yet art can be helpful to notice the larger framework patterns in which one exists, so as to more efficiently and harmoniously move within the patterns of life.

Art is participatory too; one's hand moves a crayon along paper and, surprise!, the world looks a bit different as a result: one has made their mark on the world, look, see! Numerous such marks can develop an evocative pattern; and showing someone else that set of marks invites the other's participatory activity: does the pattern evoke something similar in the other person, as compared to that evoked in the one who made the marks?

The art needs to suggest a mystery inviting the viewer to discover the answer; yet it must be familiar enough, in part, as a useful starting point for the viewer. The interpretation of art requires participation of the viewer(s), thus is a group experience even somewhat available to the lonely and isolated.

Our experience of the world is highly imaginative, whatever we see, hear, touch, taste, smell, and sense internally ... evokes significances derived from the sum patterns of similar ones already experienced. The Arts can communicate, to some extent, such meaningfulness without one actually physically experiencing it firsthand. The Arts on every level, such as the dramatic arts depicting social-situational patterns of events, paintings and movies describing visual patterns, stimulating as if oneself had experienced them more closely than for real, physically.

Art expands one's world, and can put things into a larger perspective for a person, newness with a sense of place within a larger harmony. This is at least part of art's importance.


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