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Art & Esotericism: Art and artistic action in everyday life
Topic:Art & Esotericism
Art & EsotericismMany people experience the feeling that a work of art channels and irradiates the energies, the love for the work, the goals, the intentions and intuitions of the artist. It is as if these elements were kept in the work of art; whoever is in tune with it can perceive its vibrations. From this apparently ordinary experience was born this short reflection on the sense of art and the energy it symbolizes and evokes, purifying its debris; it can infuse praxis and effectiveness in those who can transmute them.

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Art and artistic action in everyday life
A thought on art


Many people experience the feeling that a work of art channels and irradiates the energies, the love for the work, the goals, the intentions and intuitions of the artist.

It is as if these elements were kept in the work of art; whoever is in tune with it can perceive its vibrations.

From this apparently ordinary experience was born this short reflection on the sense of art and the energy it symbolizes and evokes, purifying its debris; it can infuse praxis and effectiveness in those who can transmute them.

Leonardo says that artists, apart from having spirit of observation, think about what they see; they are the best scientists – he says – because, after having thought about what they see, they communicate it to others through painting, music, sculpture and poetry.

Giambattista Vico discovered the essential principles of modern aesthetic.

He says that art is one of the fundamental operations of the human mind: it is the moment when man perceives in an upset and moved state ; this is the moment of fantasy.

Homer and Dante were such great artists thanks to the extreme vigor of their passion, not because of their human wisdom.

The spirit is not motionless but evolves through a continuous process, from the fantastic passion of the feeling to the conscience of the reason: from sense to intellect.

According to Kierkegaard the will of the aesthete to live in the instant and in the sensitivity is an illusion and leads his life to nothing (from The concept of dread, page 124).

The instant – for the aesthete – is a superficial and momentary thrill, not fullness and intensity.

The soul of the aesthete has disorderly and momentary movements, like a frog crossed by electrical current (from Le concept d'ironie, page 238).

The aesthete is a synthesis of all the possibilities; therefore in him we can see alternatively the possibility of his perdition and of his salvation.

He leads every feeling and every good, bad, sad or happy thought to the highest vibration, but he does it in an abstract way. Nothing really exists in him. As a consequence, the aesthete tending towards the search for the pleasure of beauty is unhappy, destined to desperation that is a mortal illness . He often lives an anarchic and muddled life. Looking for pleasure he finds pain. Paying attention to the present he loses himself in the occurring of his sensations.

Pleasure, though, wears out and fades at the moment when it's taken to exasperation. Boredom overwhelms the aesthete, then; Baudelaire as well states that his life swings between ennui and ideal.

Looking for the moment that flies and deludes the waiting, the aesthete often lives in the past and cultivates its memories. Memory is sadness and melancholy for him because it's never going to happen again.

Benedetto Croce considers art the representative activity used to turn intuition into expression. There isn't artistic intuition without expression that is suitable to the content.

Art is therefore intuition-expression free from any care for truth or morality. It is a lyric, subjective and fantastic representation of the feeling.

The philosopher is definitely against sensualists, who consider art an instrument of pleasure, of noisy futuristic game and decadent refinements; they are against the stagy people of the sublime who want to communicate through art their meditation on man and the world; against sentimentalists who use it as a goal for their passions.

He supports Baumgarten's idea that poetry is an oratio sensitive perfecta ; this kind of perfection is beauty.

Poets, those who welcome poetry in the suitable way, are rare:

“The fusion of pain and joy, of turmoil and serenity, the joy tinged with pain, the serenity that knows it has been turmoil and it contains in itself the turmoil of the soul, needs meditation and inner elevation, an inner purification that in many people occurs only weakly and momentarily; only in a few it flies free and whole and turns into attitude and spiritual ability.

Who enters the aesthetic sphere (Baumgarten told his pupils) must have a great heart. As Frederick Schiller saw, aesthetic elevation intimately joins moral elevation and goes through it” (from The aesthetic of Baumgarten ).

Artistic action in everyday life

The word art , beyond all theories, takes us back to the Latin ars , derived by the Arian root ar , to act, to do.

Therefore art brings movements, inspires action.

Vico states that it is the task of poetry to move the people in order to teach to virtuously operate.

In the tension to praxis that animates us – positive that for an illuminated effectiveness to spiritualize the matter and to materialize the spirit is productive – we are supported by the thought of Rudolf Steiner: “what we gather when we observe things is only a part of them. What flows in our spirit when we are in front of things is the other part of them.

The same things talk to us from the outside and inside of us.

Only when we join the language of the outside world with that of our interiority we have the full Reality”.

In abstract painting authors try and express what they perceive through symbols and signs. Evolutionary symbols are introduced: the spiral and the triangle, used in several ways by many artists.

In Kandinskj the color sings; it is used as musical harmony or harmony of the universe.

The cuts by Lucio Fontana were originated almost by anger, by the impossibility to see beyond ; the canvas represents the wall that stops us from seeing beyond it.

Abstract art communicates the beauty of abstract and archetypical ideas, leads to intuition, to perceive beyond, beyond what is represented in the work.

Colors become symbols and signs to be read; at the same time the man who searches, the Thinker, tries hard to interpret the mysterious signs of the great Book of universe in order to live its deepest senses in his little life.

A human life characterized by Order, Harmony and Rhythm has all the requisites to realize Beauty outside and inside itself.

Goethe says: “only what is eternally beautiful is genuine”.

D'Annunzio says through the mouth of the father of Andrea Sperelli, the protagonist of The Child of Pleasure , that: “One's life must be made in the same way a work of art is. It is necessary that the life of an intellectual man is made by himself… this is the rule of the intellectual man: habere non haberi (to own, not to be owned)” (from The Child of Pleasure ).

Art appears to be a great educational and evolutionary means, being an expression of the elaborate human thought and the spirit. Beauty is the sacred inside us; 5th century Greeks as well celebrated beauty as moral perfection.

The aim of art is to inspire us to make our lives artistic , in order for the spirit of art to rule them. We are all artists in the different times of our lives. We must not get used to ugliness and disharmony, otherwise our lives would be corrupted and suffocated; we must look for beauty outside and inside us.

Let's become demanding with our daily thoughts and feelings as well, so that they can produce beautiful and bright actions.

Our deeds will then react to every beautiful thing around us; they will reflect on them and generate new beauty. In this way we will be able to contribute with our little works of art to the bigger Work of art we live in, creation of an unknown Artist.

In the light of these particular senses and interpretations of art and work of art, we are trying to draw an identikit of the eternally beautiful action proposed by Goethe.

We think that a beautiful action has the following characteristics:

  • it is inclusive, not separative, because it is re-ligious (from re-ligio , to hold together);
  • it brings with it a charge of peace that relieves inner disputes and external contrasts;
  • it is evocative of good and irradiates, attracting more light;
  • it aligns mind and heart, it is an action of the mind illuminated by the heart;
  • it is gentle but not formal, subtle but not elitist;
  • It doesn't like exhibition but it lives in a fertile and productive quiet.
  • It finds its reward in itself, it doesn't look for any others outside;
  • It is chosen by a centered, conscious and directed will;
  • It is empathic with man and nature, it recognizes feelings and desires for well-being , sometimes to welcome them, sometimes to elevate them, allowing a glimpse of higher perspectives;
  • It is warm , it favors man better than technical, bureaucratic, legal and economical aspects and puts them below man;
  • It is fair because it is harmonious with the laws of the Universe;
  • Although it is open to increase and developments, it is complete in itself, it is per-fect ;
  • It is immediately recognizable because it expands and brings joy;
  • It is often linked with forgiveness ( for-given) , gift to ourselves and the other;
  • It is direct and pertinent because it appears straight away, at first sight, the only obvious one , because it is useful and of service ;
  • It is simple, far away from the complications of the ego and from utilitarianism;
  • It is often connected with sacrifice, not as a spiteful and self-pitying renunciation, but in the etymological sense of sacrum facere , to make sacred;
  • It has in itself an evolutionary potential, it leads to higher consciousness and the ability to accomplish more advanced tasks;
  • It is always rigid in the substance but it can be soft and light in the form, if relational dynamics allow it;
  • It is consistent with the most advanced part of the inner world of the person who does it;
  • It reflects in itself a part of the beauty spread in the universe;
  • It is therapeutic , it takes care (of the environment, of man and its evolution);
  • Sometimes it looks conventional or connected to the current morale, but it is always vibrant , interiorly felt;
  • It is immediately satisfying but it leads to a final unsatisfied tension that moves us to the search for new chances to act well;
  • It intuitively combines Aesthetic and Ethic, Beauty and Truth.

Synthesis

Art is certainly one of the greatest educational and evolutionary means.

The aim and the message of art are to inspire us to make our lives artistic , so to speak, that is inspired by beauty.

Let's look for Beauty outside and inside us, then.

We can all be artists that are producers of beauty in our daily life.

If we get used to ugliness and disharmony we will corrupt and suffocate our lives.

We must become demanding with our thoughts and feelings, so that they can produce beautiful and bright actions, actions that irradiate other beauty and other light.

In this way we will be able to contribute with our little “works of art” to the bigger Work of art we live in, our world.

Bianca Varelli



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