Friday, April 28, 2017

Friday, April 28, 2017

the agony and the ecstasy

Posted by Hippo Bean at 11:23 PM
sitting here eating my lonely lousy ham and cheese croissant, watching all the artists around me enjoying their breakfast and chatting amicably with each other at the Hallmark Inn in Davis, I wonder how many of them have suffered through the torment and how many have soared to euphoria when creating art. They dont really look like the artists of my romantic imagination. Last night at dinner when T mentioned how the stone 'speaks to you' and the agony and ecstasy of creating art, S said it's all bull and "tell C about it and he'd give you a lecture". Really? S has just destroyed my romantic notion of an artist. The stone doesnt speak to you? It's not total agony when the piece of art was going bad no matter how much effort and love you've put into it? it's not complete ecstasy when the piece of art suddenly becomes alive and better than you've imagined? 'no, the stone doesnt speak'. Or maybe you just dont hear it or give it a chance to speak to you. I've asked M how she felt when she's creating something. she said nothing. then how come when I was working on my flash movies, I pulled my hair out, forgot to breathe and yelled to the heavens when the movie was stubborn and just wouldnt behave? then how come when the movie suddenly became alive and played better than I could have ever planned, I shot to the stars and declared my love to living? No, i dont buy it. If a part of you doesnt go into the piece you've creating, then I'm sorry, that is simply dead art. I remember telling targetman that real life indiana jones was not all glamorous. After 5 minutes digging 2 cm of dirt, i had enough. And targetman said the romantic in him still wanted to believe otherwise. And I agree with him. if you dont experience the agony and the ecstasy, you're not an artist. art is grievous. art demands all of you. You bleed in order to give it life. You have to give it all that is in you. It demands nothing less.

"I honestly dont know the answer, Your Grace. For Raphael, the creating of a work of art is a bright spring day in the Campagna; for me, it is a transmontana howling down the valley from the mountaintops. I work from early morning to dark, then by candlelight or oil lamp. Art for me is a torment, grievous when it goes bad, ecstatic when it goes well; but always it possesses me. When I have finished with a day of work I am a husk. Everything that was inside of me is now inside the marble or the fresco. That is why I have nothing to give elsewhere." - The Agony and the Ecstasy, Irving Stone

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