This week I spent some time photographing, cataloging and admiring art for various reasons and purposes. I enjoyed interpreting for myself the thoughts and feelings each piece inspired within me, but was left wanting more. I wondered what the art meant to the artist who created it. Was he sad to paint such pale blue strokes; was she incensed when splashing those deep reds so aggressively onto that canvas? What was their story behind what I was feeling in their work?
You see, my art is for me. When I raise my pen, smooth my charcoal or caress a canvas with my brush, I am opening my soul to paper, cloth and canvas. I don't think about what a potential buyer, admirer or passer-by will think. My art is an extension of a feeling, moment or place I am at in my life; ever changing, evolving and transforming to its perfect end. My interpretation will always be different from your own… so how do I share that with you?
I recently partook in the ‘Process of Art’ Faculty Exhibition at Sedona Arts Center. I shared one of my paintings as well as a short paragraph about the ‘process’ that inspired me to create and complete the piece I showed. It was poetic and somewhat elusive – but it shared what I felt, including a little bit about me. When people viewed my art, they were able to experience for a brief fleeting moment a little more than just eye candy. They were able to swim within my vision, a description of scent and the every changing process I took. To me, this makes the experience so much more fulfilling. Because now we’re not just viewing art – we’re experiencing it.
The most common view on gallery exhibitions is, “you are not well-versed enough to understand this art.” That’s where an attendant comes in and tells you how much you don’t comprehend and you write your check. Or is it?
Art is truly subjective. I’ve said that a thousand times. You will not see what I see in your art and I will not feel what you feel in mine. But… we can experience art together, in a shared moment. And that mutual understanding can be even more rewarding if we knew just a little bit more about your intentions, interpretations and desires that helped you create the art you present to us. So tell us how you felt when you painted that portrait. Describe in one sentence what it was that forced you to painstakingly carve each intricate line on a worn solemn face. Share with us your muse – and our appreciation will be unique in that we will join with your art experience… not just the visual of your art.
What inspires you?
What would you say about your art?
Remember: grow; learn; conserve; preserve; create; question; educate; change; and free your mind.
About: Kelli Klymenko is an artist, a faculty member and the Marketing & Events Coordinator at Sedona Arts Center: a gathering place where artists can learn, teach, and exhibit their works at the center’s School of the Arts and Fine Art Gallery in uptown Sedona.