Day: February 3, 2011

Art and Hopelessness

I felt a tremor of happiness run through me when I first saw that my blog was finally being read. Then, I felt convulsed. This tremor was the contemptible electrical signal that marked everything wrong with my motivations of pursuing art. Or maybe, it’s the artists who are to blame.

What it told me was that I coveted the desire to be appreciated more than the desire to create.  I wrote for an audience, that is, and not for myself, or for the sake of art: “the good and the beautiful”. Whatever was written by me was glossed and decorated so it be delectable for the readers, howsoever imaginary they might be. Hence, everything I wrote was mendacious, and since writers pride themselves on telling the truth, I was nothing but an abhorrence pursuing a sacrilege in the name of (self-proclaimed) art.

But then, who is immune to this feeling? I’m sure every artist goes to bed insecure that he is nothing more than a base whiner who does nothing better than earn money (not a lot of it anyway) for having himself heard, that he is intellectually crippled to the extent that he cannot even realise how worthless he is. The next moment, however, would return in him a breath of self-assuredness, depending upon his achievements maybe, and he would soon be stroking his vanity by comparing his intellect with the masses. This is the cost of having a higher conscience. Every artist is cursed to suffer immense torment over just the tag of being one.

Essentially it boils down to self-worth, and the tender sentiments in this regard can be mutilated to shambles by just a passing comment, as they often do. It’s difficult to keep a count of writers, potentially as good as Philip Roth, paralysed because a passing comment slit the arteries of their motivation whence bled all their self-worth.

(I have to confess here that this post has lost direction a bit, but that often happens with first drafts, and I won’t care to edit it, I already have a zillion projects waiting to be edited ‘just a little’. In your face, my filthy readers, see how I am indifferent to you!)

The shameless, or the appreciated, meanwhile, keep pursuing the elusive goal – the goal that must not be ever reached for it would destroy the real intent behind any work of art (for the intent is nothing more than pursuing the elusive goal). In the process, they discover many a truths about human nature, through projecting themselves on others, through empathising with others, and through musing about the purpose of life. By doing this, by making themselves miserable everyday and by keeping at it, they open to the perceptive fellow human eyes a window to their own souls. Of course they demand attention like lovers, but that is just a small charge for a service very appreciable indeed.