Отклонения, лирически и прозаически
Essays
Homo Artisticus

Humanity, Art, and Homo Artisticus - An essay about these

A land was discovered, a land where dreams could grow anew, and so, the people of Europe rushed towards it. At that time the Old World was suffering from almost every possible illness, common to civilization - misery, brought along by Plagues and Wars, and intellectual misery, resulting from the strict Guardianship of the Holy Inquisition - the misuse of religion. The Crusades had already been pronounced a romantic past and there were but a few that would dare dream out loud.

These people needed a dream, and badly. The people, the public had started awakening after the Dark Night of the Soul of the Middle Ages, and answers were due to the many questions (it) asked. And the people asked about the world, about God and Religion, about Justice, and how easy transferable is the power to wield justice, and all this resulted in questioning the godly origin of Aristocracy - a myth, only to be broken down centuries later.

The Dream Rush followed then, so I call it - this flight towards a land where one could be free from dogmas and principles, so deeply inbuilt to European life, that the spirit of Humanity there would soon have died unless it sent forward its "seed" - to grow on a land not yet wasted.

Few were those to abandon Security and start on a journey into the Great Unknown, for it is with a few people that there comes the knowledge of Evolution and its means and ways, and one of them is the absence of Security. To start on a journey one needs not the least possible amount of things and pre-planned ideas (principles) to bring along, but needs no things and principles to bring along. It is not about raising the anchor, but cutting it loose, and then embark.

Those few slowly grew to become many. And, the number of Free-minded people being small, as it has always been, and will, many of the newcomers brought along their old stuff and ideas. They, of course, and happily, realized the need of Change, and, knowing not how, what and where (because they had it already planned), they claimed to become Purifiers. Thus the New World was inhabited not by the New People, as should have been, but by the Purified Old People (shit happens, as they were to discover centuries later).

The very starter of a movie, one of my favorites, said, to the world in general: "if you are to visit a new world, in search of adventure, or of a new way of life (the latter being the longer form of the former), please, don't bring along all your favorite clothes and things, and when you arrive, don't stay in a hotel with running hot water and cable TV. (The Beach).

But, as it happened, man brought along all of his diseases - religion, mistrust and institutions, beside the Small Pox, etc. and, suddenly, the New World tended to resemble the Old one, and not differ even in its hatred to its parent - an answer to the attempt of the elder ones to control the younger, disguised in good will. The inability of a mind to accept Change, being the engine of Evolution, claiming to look for security, marks the end of its development, i.e. intellectual death.

The Dream World became inhabited with Dreamers, and with Consumers of dreams, that, as implied within Universal Laws, were to many times outnumber the former. Art, the materialization of dreams, was transferred there too. And its development did not start anew, but soon tended to move parallel to European Art development. Art is one of those things that develop themselves inside an artist's soul, if planted by Chance, and Reason and its ways do not produce Art, but aid it if present - so it does not need a "fresh start". Art is a mechanism of Evolution, it evolves, and that is what differs it from all other creations of man, which all tend to ruin and death, if left on themselves.

Art has, of course, an Evolution that follows a certain pattern, which is quite parallel to that of Man - the evolution of Homo Sapiens that shall result in presenting, as its final product, Man, or should we better call him Homo Artisticus. It is inner peace, sensitivity, and a more, and enough, humane approach to every single thing that would characterize this being, known to the world from literature only. This is a stage of development that an artist finally reaches when achieving knowledge of himself, sufficient, so that he shall live a life of peace with himself.

The ways of evolution, employed to produce him, are to be observed within the development of every human being; it is only that with a few of them it reaches a final stage. I shall now draw your attention to the development of a human being, that has a lot of similar traits to that of Art, and more specifically, Literature.

Young children are known to slowly learn language, until there comes a time when, in a matter of weeks, this same child, able before to utter sentences rarely coherent, suddenly starts to speak reasonably, as if it has always been able to. Evolution moves in Jumps, and sudden.

Then, in growing up towards adulthood, a child, now a young man, turns to fantasies, imagined worlds and plots. Thus his/her speech becomes more and more inhabited with scenery and personage, that are the (idealized) versions of him/herself. A dreamer yet to meet with Reality - thus is a young man called by adults. And when adults start killing the young man's dreams, teaching him real stuff, the dreamer turns into a Rebel - sensing the stealth of his happiness (dreams). Then it is that language, speech, words become harsher, more personal, more self-centered, the I appears and rushes into the search of itself. It depends only on how much of art has been genetically planted into one, that he/she accomplishes the search of the self, and few are those to start the search at all. One in a million, says Evolution, and leaves the rest, the vast majority blind.

Now I shall go back to Art - the Renaissance reminded the world that artists exist, and that they would start (again) the search for the Human Being, and his Beauty. There and then many colors and words were employed to portrait Him, and Nature, and Beauty. The world was reminded of Life, almost destroyed during the Dark Ages.

Romantic artists used mountains of words to describe a single stone, thus giving the sense of a presence, reaching beyond material reality - they were the first to delve into the field of metaphysics. It is as if they, to the eye of nowadays` man, dreamed out loud whole new worlds; that is why they are called Romantic - they were the dreamers, the teenagers of Art.

Later came the Transcendentalists - to go beyond mere description, and analyze, and realize the non-material vision of the self. It was then that the first authors to write about their real selves were born, illuminating the end of 19th and the beginning of the 20th century with the light of Man, the being in which Reason brought, at last, peace in the knowing and in the being. Whitman did it in rhymes, and, later on, Miller said "I..." and meant himself, being so honest, and so real that his works were censored for decades. The autobiography book was brought to the public, signifying both the accomplishment of the self and the revolution made, that pronounced the freedom of speech - I mean not the freedom given by someone, but the freedom that one gives to himself.

What we can observe today is the final stages of the development of Art, that, in our own lifetime, shall give life to the previously mentioned Homo Artisticus, and lead to the dying away of the rest, now having done their job - the material upon which Evolution excersized itself - one in a million.

Now, with all written above, I made an attempt to "draw a map", a map that deals with Time and Evolution, which I find very useful in "placing" an artist in a category - something that the mind of a critic is often occupied with - making categories, and filling them. Critics are the children of a great illusion - the illusion that, if everything is explained, categorized, learned it can be mastered.

I will hereby "categorize" two of the Dreamers that were born in the New World:

Washington Irwing was a romantic storyteller. A waterfall of words - colors, shapes, sounds - all to produce a picture, where events are much less than details, which bring no more to the reader but a "living picture". His stories were some of the first, which, increasing in amount, and thus helping the development of writing, can now be recognized as the forefathers of pop art. Pop-art is where a mind has not the ability to produce the whole fantasy on its own, and so it is helped - in scenery and in action, and even ideas, which, ordinarily, the reader should be able to reach on his own - art for those that can only consume, and not create.

Edgar Alan Poe is of another type and size. He was admired for his talent to tell a story in such a way that the reader will live through it. I mean the type of story, which The Tell-Tale Heart is - told as if the writer really lived in it. I can only draw a parallel to some stories of our own time - told, of course, in a way that suits the time - movies.

The end, no more...

14 January 2002