please, tell me if i’m wrong about this… as soon as there were cave dwellers, there were cave drawings. and as soon as there were cave drawings, there were storytellers. and as soon as there were storytellers, there were myth-makers. and the myths they made spoke of the unknown, of gods looking at us, judging us and deciding we could not be left alone. that is when the myth-makers discovered their power, when they understood that they could influence, guide and have authority over others as they told those amazing stories, especially if they involved aspects supernatural, aspects that could not be satisfyingly explained for they had no documented context and, most importantly, could not be proven wrong by empirical study. the greeks believed their dreams to have been transmitted during the night by the gods telling them what to do. the romans had the demiurge, a very, very tall man, who could actually reach into the heavens, talk to the gods and relay their messages back down to mere mortals. we have pat robertson, granted a diminished source of wisdom but still, all-in-all, a myth-maker in his own right. all of them, not merely content with transmission but requiring obedience without investigation. what once was wonder was turned into indispensable certainty in one or another’s story and the exclusion of the others’, to the detriment of peace. that was the beginning of faith.
could the motivation for such an unreasonable approach be the simple, base, human need for control? i think so. control over ourselves, over our own fears, certainly. but then, still, our lives are just too damn hard, aren’t they? it was too hard then and it is too hard now not to have a safety net. and religion, as it eventually became known, is quick to provide one, which it does elegantly because it is so rich with stories, so rich with characters, so rich with lessons, with morality, with not-so-white lies. religion tries to do what art had done before it, to rationalize what keats romantically called “negative capability,” the wish to find a way for us to live with the unexplainable. art does so much, with so much more humility as it attempts, with mere interpretation of the world, to show us that which cannot be shown, daring us to look beyond form. art shows us, by nature, that there are parts of this world we cannot see, but it does so without vanity because it dares not name that which it cannot know, it dares not draw its face. the very opposite of the religious approach, on the whole.
that is why i will go ahead and keep drawing, playing, choosing colors and camera angles in order to fill the void left by the original confusion and wish you an equally artful week!