Monday, April 2, 2012

Why Art is Always Important


I walked into Mishawaka Antiques on Saturday just for kicks; just because it was a free-wheeling afternoon and I could. It's one of the best eye candy stops around and it never fails to inspire me, but I didn't expect to be stopped dead in my tracks in the second booth back.

I swung around the corner and it pulled me over by some other-worldly force. I had ventured out for the day to spend pocket change on five-cent rummage-sale dessert plates, not $48 on an unfinished canvas that I couldn't even explain.

I only knew that I loved it. (Just like I did this time.)

My friend said, "You could make that." But then we remembered that #1) I never would and #2) It would look like an untrained monkey made it if I tried. It wasn't my art.

We kept walking and browsing and oohing and ahhing, but my heart was still back at the crazy train. What was that thing? Why did I like it so bad?

I knew all along that it was coming home with me.

So right at the very end, I wound around and I grabbed it.

Standing in the check-out line it started to look even crazier and I wavered, silently, and just a tiny bit. First, it reminded me of The Shining. Then I saw Russell Crowe's A Beautiful Mind character frantically creating it to the tune of the slipping away of his mind.

I saw a red bank barn with a green roof. Hands down. No question.

My friend saw a rose.

We are both pretty sure that it holds a top-secret Homeland Security code. Or the formula for Dr. Pepper.


Walking out with my art, I felt somehow understood by the unknown artist with the propensity for numerical repetition. I appreciated her palette, her perspective, her scrawls.


That's art for you. It'll reel you in and answer a question you never even asked. You'll think about it when you should be sleeping. You'll wonder who created it, and why.


The real truth is, we all love art. It might be oil or pastel. It might be a Mustang with a supercharger. Maybe it's the perfect jump shot. Maybe it's truffle oil barely whispering in the pan. It could be silk cut on the bias or Japanese anime. Maybe it's Beyonce. 

But no matter who we are or where we've been, we recognize the things that know the secret hand-shake of our heart, and sometimes, those things need to live with us.

Woven thin through the middle of my pull to simplify is the simple truth that God created my heart and He created it to respond to the world around it. I'm no longer interested in excess or frivolity. I don't need 99% of the things that I "love" (and there were many that day.) But I can't escape the thought that I'll always need some art, in whatever form it finds me.

What do you think? Have you ever fallen for something unexpected? Lay it on me.

41 comments:

  1. I was there Saturday around 3:) saw a little telephone table I instantly fell on love with!

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  2. i fell in love with Adam and boy was THAT unexpected.

    oh, different topic?

    I do love art...and the older I get the more I feel like it's okay to love whatever moves me even if no one else gets it. because that's kind of the point, isn't it? :)

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  3. I think you should buy art when it speaks to you. And you are honoring the other person's creativity and time and effort. I'm an artist and I appreciate that you didn't try to make a copy.

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  4. Art is one of those gifts of common grace. It speaks to the Creator of it all. Love that. Love your new piece.

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  5. I am in love with 3 greenish yellow rubbery-plastic little cups that sat on my grandma's sink/counter for years. They remind me of my childhood and my mom's childhood, but they have no monetary value or beauty to anyone but me. A couple of years ago, she sent them down to me - now one is used in the bathtub for a rinse cup for the boys and the other is in my cupboard to help me scoop out flour. I love those silly green cups.

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  6. Beyonce the singer or Beyonce the metal chicken?

    Falling in love with my husband who had a 3 year old son from a previous relationship was not at all expected. But we all fell in love together and we make a pretty awesome family. This isn't how I pictured my life but I love it and I wouldn't change it for anything!

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  7. I fell in love with succulents this year. It's a deep, layered love. I am planting them obsessively. It can't be stopped.

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  8. Secret hand-shake of our heart--AHHHHHH!!!! That's art right there!

    But seriously, or whatever passes for seriously in my case, I have this musician son who makes no sense to me. I've met all these artists. I don't always get them. It's like they're speaking a language I don't quite understand. One of them said to me, "Artists get the Holy Spirit. Maybe that's true. Maybe they speak a language of transcendence that I know is true but seems just beyond my ability to put into words.

    Or numbers.

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  9. Anything numbery calls my name. Clarifying, it calls my name as long as it is decorative. When I have to actually use the numbers I run. I think it is beautiful too.
    Dana

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  10. His name is Brad.

    He's now my hubby of 3+ years and when we met "It was moydahhh!" (name that show!)

    No..when we met, we had such polarizing political/world views that we often just fought and I'd say "We are just going to have to agree to disagree here before I say something mean."

    I bought a semi-okay painting of Van Gogh in Minneapolis a few years back. I was broke, I could have used the money for something else, but it spoke to me.

    Same deal with the ceramic angel I bought at the Flagstaff Goodwill in 1996. I've gotten rid of most things during my many moves, but that angel has made EVERY move. It started out blue with glitter, it is now white and resides with my angel and inspiration cards in a little tray. She holds the "faith" card everyday and a pretty blue rock.

    Yes, rock. I've also paid good money for rocks. I can't explain what my deal is, but I'm drawn to them and if a child creates rock art? I'm done. I'll pay whatever just to have it. When Brad and I were dating, he'd move the rocks around on my fireplace mantel and I got REALLY weird about it once and just said "Don't touch the rocks."

    I love the painting. What I like about it is the layers...various layers with various meanings. That's what makes it interesting to me.

    Good choice AND LOL on the Beautiful Mind comment, Dr. Pepper formula and nod to anime.

    YOU are hilarious.

    xxoo~

    TT

    PS: Quote is from "Hart to Hart"- tell me you watched it!!

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  11. So, moving right along... I do love the artwork. If it speaks to you, that's all you need. Love & hugs, The Nit-Picker ;) SallyWally

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  12. I like it! And I like the Beautiful Mind reference. I loved that movie. My question is what did Corey say about you buying it?
    xo, Cheryl

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  13. I fell in love with the reflections on the lake, and I will never get enough of them.

    xxoo

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  14. Ooh, i've been in that place many times...standing in the check out line, wavering. I either ditch it and run, or figured I made it this far, might as well bring the item home. What a fun treasure!

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  15. i believe art speaks to the secret places. it makes us alive in a way that words never will. it gives us a sneak peek into heaven.

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  16. That you answered the call is saying something. Nine times out of 10 I will leave what I love on the shelf for various reasons, mainly money. Speaking of 9, your painting would drive me crazy because all I want to know is where is 999 boxed off in all of those numbers? Why was it left out? The questions would torment me. ;)

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    Replies
    1. Cory's first comment, "Uh, why is "666" in a box?" My friend and I sort of screamed and then we realized that other numbers were grouped, too. (we're slow that way) I never noticed that the nines are missing! Crud.

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    2. The 9's are missing because they don't repeat like that... There isn't a nine after 99 :)
      You see a barn... I see a child/boy in a green shirt(light green arms) lying his head down tired from his math homework! I'm thinking I need a piece like this hanging in over our homework table! Art is amazing- everyone sees what is important to them or alive in them at the time. Maybe my vision is telling me I can't wait for summer and a time when my kids don't have math homework. :)

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  17. art is never Beyonce. haha I love your canvas. Glad you didn't pass it up. It would have haunted you. It has a way of doing that...Trust this old Destiny Child hater.

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  18. All I know is that last set of numbers is binary code for 150 :) . http://numbers.0x04.net/binary/150 :)

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    1. How do you KNOW this stuff? I'm more intrigued than ever... :)

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    2. Simply google this set of numbers :)

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  19. i think what you stumble upon unexpectedly is the most art-full place. i love these photos that my friend, autumn, took. she's a wedding photographer who took a chance on nature. the third one almost brought me to tears. http://www.autumnburke.com/wp02/spring/. xoxo

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  20. It's weird, but I fall for old lamps. It's the first thing I look for and the last thing I need.

    I love the story behind the Life is Beauty Full art. I was once that girl sitting in the booth selling her wares to the masses under a tent on hot summer days. I loved it, but the worst thing I would hear all day long is..."I could do that!" Awful.

    Now about your new painting...I think if I would have seen it I would have bought it for you. :) It's probably been pinned all over the place by now and soon there will be a tutorial on how to paint the recipe for Dr. Pepper. Because you know, everybody is thinking...."I could do that!"

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  21. So beautiful! I just came across your blog, love it! you def have a new follower!

    door251.com

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  22. It's funny how groups of numbers draw you in. I somehow saw the 3's first and then the 6's. Its kind of like my life code. I always seem to look at the clock when it's 6:36, and guess what my address was my entire childhood? Yep 636. I don't know if I'm drawn to those numbers because they were such a huge part of my life or if they're in my life for a more huge reason than I can imagine. Kind of like the chiken and the egg thing, which came first? I love the painting. See, I see a moss covered mountain in Ireland covered in bright pink flowers. Yeah, it's what the mind imagines when it sees something that makes it that much more special and amazing!

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  23. "It's a double rainbow. But what does it meeeeeeeaaaannn man, what does it mean?"

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  26. If you are not already watching the new show on Fox "Touch", you should. It will give you a whole new perspective on number theory. And it has Kiefer Sutherland still running around like Jack Bauer.
    I am also secretly in lust with this scarf: http://www.dianaeng.com/shop/fibonacci-scarf/ because of the Fibonacci code.

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  27. it might be beyonce :D hahahahahha


    the 666 is the first thing i noticed. and it freaked me out tad. but i get ya. i love art too

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  28. I love anything that screams out to me "I come with a story, but you'll only ever have the questions." I get to imagine, dream, make up a story, recreate a story, make it anything I choose. The creative continues. What more can we ask for from art?

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  29. Those numbers would drive me every which way of crazy, but that's what makes art so personal - I love that about it. There's nothing better than owning an original :)

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  30. Dearest Friend, you can not imagine the delight I took in seeing this post. Not for myself, but for Anita. Anita and I have years between us, but we are kindred. Today she was in and I took her right over to the computer and showed her this page. She clapped, we laughed, and we spoke of items we have fallen for... Please, I love this piece, I've been up close and personal, and many times thought about it coming home with me... For the sake of this post, and Anita reading it, I'm so happy farmgirl/rentalgirl has it now.
    ~G~xo

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  31. I so enjoy your honesty, openness and writing style !

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  32. I have a red chalk art pig that I ADORE - and have since collected 2 others. Couldn't agree more about the fact that everyone loves art, whether they know it or not.

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  33. Emily W put it beautifully. Art can unsettle as well as inspire or soothe. It has an amazing way of revealing things we never realised. Good poems can do that too. X

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  34. Ps I immediately thought it was a mother and child embracing?:)

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