What is Art for

Lunar Orbiter 1, 1966

Lunar Orbiter 1, 1966

What is Art for? It’s a commonplace thought that we used to know, but have lost, the answer to, along with God and other deeper dimensions of life. Materialism, commercialism, politics in the worst sense, anomie, nihilism, solipsism, and all the other fare out of the intellectual soup kitchen of modernity now provide the meager gruel of our existence. As though there were only one thing that art is for.

Before there was art, beyond the modern panoply, there was worship of the Unseen Essence, and human beings of all tribes, in every aspect of their lives, expressed, recorded, honored, intimated, found metaphors for their experience of what the Lakota Indians, for one, called Wakan Tanka, the Great Mystery.

We’ve been colleged. We’d never fall for that. After all, what was Marx and Freud and the great Enlightenment all about? What were they for? It’s either one or the other…. One is either an educated person or one is….

Frederick Glaysher

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