An admiration for Art didn’t come very early on in life to me. Like many things fine, it is an acquired taste. A few days back I was thinking that why is it that certain works of Art which aren’t even deemed to be exquisite move me so much. Why is it that when I hear a song, I can hear the meaning; when I see a movie, I can feel the emotion and when I read a book, I can experience the adventure?
The answer I found is pretty simple, like and unlike many others, I feel too much. I have the capacity to be moved by the tiniest show of vulnerability and be angered by the slightest of words. I think I always knew this that I feel heightened emotions. Both good and bad. I can experience extreme pain and jealousy and also extreme happiness and gratitude.
When I come across a piece of art, whether it be dance, music, the written word or acting, it speaks to me. Even though some of the works of art closest to my heart haven’t been the finest in their field, yet they are special to me, only because they spoke to me. They did what they were created to do. They made me feel exactly what their creator wanted me to feel while creating it.
I tried to push myself to read some of the great works. I tried to watch some great movies and I tried to develop a taste for a certain kind of music. But I failed at all of this. I will not lie, paintings I’m not very fond of, nor do I find them speaking to me, but then I’ve never truly seen a real painting in my life, like Da Vinci or Van Gogh. I wonder what is the point of reading Shakespeare if you can’t feel those words as if they were spoken from your heart and tongue. What is the point of any work of art which does not speak to you, which no matter how profound, does not find it’s way into your heart? Isn’t that what artists strive for, for taking a place in people’s hearts and not their minds? What purpose does the writer’s skill fulfil if the sex scene written by him/ her does not arouse the reader and conjure up a feeling of ecstasy while reading it?
Till date, no one is absolutely sure for whom Beethoven wrote “Für Elise” (For Elise) and to be honest, the lack of knowledge of its recipient didn’t seem to make any difference to the world as “Für Elise” is probably his most famous composition. I think just the knowledge that Beethoven dedicated this masterpiece to somebody, whether her real name was Elise or not, is enough to make you revel in its mastery. The fact that this piece of music is an indication of his feelings towards a woman whom he cared for, maybe even loved, shows the honesty and the vulnerability of the piece of art that was created. Sure, the piece flaunts his musical prowess but what makes it stay in the hearts of millions of people, centuries later, is that it meant something to someone.
When it comes to forms of art, another form which I’m extremely fond of is Dance. Dance gives one the ability to stay mute and tell a story through one’s body. Even I didn’t know this for quite some time, but I find myself extremely fascinated with Ballet particularly. There’s a sense of serenity and elitism in that dance form. The form itself portrays unattainability. As a normal individual, you can’t just wake up one day and decide to learn ballet. Other dance forms, one can try, but not ballet. It requires years of training. What I love about ballet is that it represents a very disciplined form of art, strict even, yet it is theatrical in its presentation. I think one of the reasons I became fascinated with Ballet was because of Tchaikovsky’s composition of “Swan Lake”. Even though I’ve never seen the play live, “The dance of the little swans” is one part which I like the most. Listening to the music itself, you can imagine a bunch of small swans hopping around. The piece perfectly conveys the mood of the scene, which is light-hearted and mischievous in a sense.
Art is meant to be immersed into. It is meant to consume you as you try to consume it. It is meant to stay with you, not in your memory but in your heart. It is supposed to draw you in to its own world. It is supposed to make you forget your own reality. It is supposed to reach out to you and pull you into its void, as you are supposed to soak it in, till you can’t differentiate between yourself and the piece of art you’re now a part of.