On Tuesday, I listed a handful of Qs — I don’t have all of the As yet (and don’t expect to have anything close to them for a while), but this quote from Virginia Woolf (via James Clear’s newsletter) seems like a good place to start:
There is one peculiarity which real works of art possess in common. At each fresh reading one notices some change in them, as if the sap of life ran in their leaves, and with skies and plants they had the power to alter their shape and colour from season to season. To write down one’s impressions of Hamlet as one reads it year after year, would be virtually to record one’s own autobiography, for as we know more of life, so Shakespeare comments upon what we know.
As you might remember, my two big Qs for Tues were:
When do you share your art with others, even though doing so could mean accepting that part of it isn’t where it should be yet? Does it make a difference if your creative art is fixed (a book, a painting) vs. created anew each time (a performance)?
Is the experience of reading/viewing/listening to art a process or a product? Is it a process from the audience member’s end and a product from the creator’s end? Can it be a process from the creator’s end, even if the created item is fixed (a book, a painting) vs. created anew each time (a performance)?
After reading that Virginia Woolf quote, it might be reasonable to hypothesize that:
Real works of art are process-based, in the sense that you go through the process of experiencing them every time you interact with them. Real works of art are also process-based in the sense that there is always more to process; if the artist and the audience are both bringing their best to the work, then the possibilities of experiencing something new during each successive interaction are close to infinite.
This means that real art is not complete until every part of it is precisely where it should be. You can share your art before it is complete, and you can use what you learn during that sharing to complete your art — but if you are trying to create the kind of art that remains alive through subsequent interactions, there can’t be any dead spots in it.
Those are the As I needed to give myself today.
How about you? ❤️