Anyone who stops to look at a painting, whether it’s in a museum, a gallery or even a reproduction on a piece of paper or in some other type of format, will experience a feeling of curiosity that will eventually lead him to develop an opinion, based on his expectations and ideas; making it clear that art appreciation is more than a visual experience.
In general, artistic creation is related with the search of beauty, however it is not only a matter of the aesthetic and symbolism. To create a work of art, it is necessary that the artist integrates processes of research, develops diverse techniques of expression and knowledge of the ideas in question that need to be transmitted.
In a piece of art we can find the work done by an individual or a group, that focuses on exhibiting their world views. They perform processes of observation, perception and above all auto-reflection of their experiences; the particular situations that affects them or the context in which they live, create and express their ideas. In this way, if we analyze art; from different perspectives we can find that art has a value that goes beyond the aesthetic, assuming a function as an instrument that transmits knowledge.
A different way of looking
Artistic appreciation implies analyzing, interpreting and valuing. In a strict academic sense, the study of the visual arts (printings or painting) implies analyzing the dote, the line, the plane, the volume, the colour, the shapes, the figures, the totality or composition, the rhythm, the symmetry, the proportion, the opposition and the direction.
But leaving aside rigorous art analysis, and looking from a more basic perspective, if we conceive art pieces as visual objects that are permanently in communication with a spectator , we will find invariably, a work that achieves to attract attention, inviting us to doubt and questioning what we are and what surrounds us.
In consequence its influence invites us to explore and understand different perspectives, and allows us to establish connections that facilitates comprehension of our reality. In this sense works of art break time and space barriers, and they become universal messages that show basic aspects of human creation.
The way we see, is influenced by what we know and what we believe. Art appreciation allows us to form an integral conception of man. It links the Mind and feelings, transforming our conscience. Art explains how we perceive the world, our experience and observations, and the ways we process these feelings. It give us something to share, and therefore it connects us.
Beyond the aesthetic
Works of art, and their appreciation, constitute the most immediate sources of knowledge to the human mind. Because through symbols, we are removed from reality allowing us to understand the intricacy, harmony and the beauty of mankind.
Recent visual culture and technological revolutions, have modified the traditional ways of expression. In this sense the biggest contribution from modern art is its exploration in search of the truth, based on culture and values. Artistic creation, suggests a possibility to express freely, take a stance, and develop historical truths that give an answer and an interpretation to continual questionings.
Art in a relationship with learning, makes us change contexts, influencing the way we think and act, whilst showing us the world under a critical eye, exposing under discussed themes, giving voice to forgotten themes, and above all, giving us the tools to encourage dialogues and recover cultural identities.
It is because of these reasons that it is necessary to encourage the work of young artists, because they represent the possibility of approaching and transmitting new ideas. In the same way, it is necessary to promote the function of arts as not being limited to an aesthetic product of contemplation.
Only when we recognize that art works are vehicles of communication, which have the power to generate and illustrate knowledge, can we then appreciate its importance. Art changes us without giving us advice, it evolves our conscience, and gives us the possibility of developing our creativity to innovate. In art we trust.
By: Emilio Hernández (Creative co-founder of UNO61CASA DE ARTE)