Enlightened Objects: The Necessity of Art (Part IV)


Lavish or sumptuous, grotesque or fearsome, our creations exist side by side with all else.

Art defies norms and invents them. Art sculpts us into de-centered objects—eyes that register; bodies that undo. In our hands, art is the uncontrollable daemon, willing us to bend and succumb to the subconscious. There is Si Lewen attempting to remove his own hand or Vincent van Gogh dismembering himself because he cannot rendezvous with his siren, Art herself.

Art is in our blood. Denied, Art demands blood.


Jeff Kunkel’s paintbrush tin


We could argue that when the first caveman dipped his palm into crushed flowers and marked the cave wall, his inner Beast must have stood back to take in the scene, momentarily pacified by simplicity of the act. Saying nothing, yet standing with total attention, the Beast within glanced repeatedly at the marks dancing in the light of the fire, and later, the sunrise, observing the flickering of light on the print, playing in the oblique luminescence. The primal Beast took note, also, that now that the mark was a daily presence, a thing of contemplation, an object of nuance in its unchanging state, they should come to be friends. Thus, the first art lay siege to a soul, conquering the interior Beast and the imagination in one stroke—all with a lone handprint on the wall.






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