Art by Agniezska Nowinska
What are the qualities of art that connect us through cultures, language, lifestyle, politics, economic status, gender, and religious belief or lack of any dogma?
If a child looks at a famous painting and responds, is it because he or she is critiquing technique or style? I don’t think so. So what is it – topic, colors?
I took Eden, at age 3 to the art exhibit of a friend. I held her up so she could see the art at her eye level. She was delighted until we came to one particular painting when she began to shake her head. I asked her if she liked it. She again indicated no. I brought the artist to the painting and showed her Eden’s reaction. Of course most artists don’t take criticism well, but my friend knew this child and explained that the abstract painting was about love and feelings of the heart. Eden still rejected the painting. I tried to see what was different about this one painting in the show and could not discern anything that could prompt Eden’s response. I remain perplexed by this experience.
What I know is that young children don’t look at art with their intellect, they feel it with their spirit eyes, with a sense of wonderment they still retain. Whatever that painting held in its spirit, Eden was not buying it.
If, as adults, we could look at art with our emotional intelligence, what would we discover about the art and about ourselves?
© 2018 Bessie Adams Senette