Making - The Power to Transform

Following on from the ‘What is Art?’ question I just wanted to take a peek at the power of art to transform.

Take a powerful subject like genocide. What can an artist do?

Here is one artist's vision explained. 

Here is the invitation to other artists to join in.

Here is a website to support the message.

Here is the installation in New Orleans.
This is what will go to Washington in June 2013.

The artist supports the art project with a skilled use of media. For example, YouTube is used every step of the way to ensure the message is accessible globally.

Pen drawings of white bones on black background

It may be tempting to think that working on a small scale in your home or workshop, you are not in the same league. You could even think you are failing to make this kind of impact. Or maybe that transformation is not what you are about anyway. I disagree.

It seems to me that for many members of HVA, and other artists across the country, art is about sending up a prayer of appreciation. I don’t mean that in a religious sense – but in a  human spiritual sense that every race, colour and creed could understand. Each landscape, botanical flower, still life, and portrait is a lighted beacon for the beauty that surrounds us. Such works could also be understood as a thanks for the power of observation and the skill to render it. Each imaginary picture, whether abstract, or surreal or expressionist – or works in different media such as fabric, wood, stone, print, metal, glass, photography - are also about appreciating human qualities like creativity, ingenuity, imagination plus the full array of human emotion including humour. All of these (often small) things add up to something that is hugely important in a language that everyone can understand.

So, when Herts Open Studios arrives in September and artists share their shows, the sheer mass of this appreciation creates an enormous county-wide installation. Looking at the world through the value of appreciation is constructive. And as we go about our daily local business maybe what we don’t fully appreciate is how globally important that is. Yet, we understand we are all connected.  So we know that  such a constructive and positive example has the potential to spread. Not as a literal copy of Open Studios, but as a feeling that all over the world our spiritual needs are best met through creative actions and constructive approaches. The possible ultimate conclusion is that much of the negative and most of the truly awful side of human nature would be softly conquered over time - and quietly and invisibly laid to rest. What power that is.

Diary date reminders – on the subject of making

HVA present Cas Holmes, textile mixed media artist and author, with a talk entitled: ‘Urban/Nature Using the Found’ about making plus travels in Japan and India.
At North Herts College, Cambridge Road, Hitchin, SG4 0JD.
On Wednesday, 27 February 2013, 19:00.
HVA members and students FREE; visitors £5. Do book in advance to secure a seat.

School of Creative Arts and UH Arts, University of Hertfordshire, present Chris Bucklow, art historian and sculptor talking about ‘What Making Does to the Maker’ from a psychological perspective.
At Room A166, Lindop Building Herts University, College Lane Campus, College Lane, Hatfield, Herts AL10 9AB.
On Tuesday, 5 March 2013, 13:00 – 14:00.
This is part of the Art Talk SeriesTwo  which includes a range of weekly events( running from 5 February to 19 March) that HVA members are invited to attend FREE of charge. Times and locations can vary from week to week.