Agnes Field in her studio.
ON THE RADAR
Art in the Cross-hairs
WHENEVER I have the chance to sit and look at the Columbia River and its environs, I am filled with the awe nature always provides. We, who live here, sometimes forget the magnificence when viewed on a daily basis–sight needs surprise and freshness to re-imagine. I love driving up over the south hills of Astoria that suddenly open to the expansive breath-grabbing view of the Columbia River.
Unfortunately, the expansive sensation is fleeting and overcome by the in-difference of daily routines and obligations. Or perhaps we seek refuge in the daily routine. Living in a time where nothing is as it seems to be, does create anxious choices.
What to do? Time is limited. Maybe all we can do is get up and go to work again. We are caught in the cross-hairs of global dilemmas–terror, global disasters, destruction and despair. It is still possible to be oblivious in smug security. It’s all too far away from the hearth. In the mean-time, head-in-the-sand has never been a safe solution for any crisis. It is too much to suggest that global disasters can be remedied by fragile and perishable canvas, bits of wood or clay, or an ephemeral song.
What art can do is change awareness and perception–of ourselves in relation to nature, and the value and significance of life. Art stakes out new territory and informs us what is possible for the human spirit. Any creative act is “thinking outside the box”–away from the prescribed and conditioned.
Perhaps what we need is more improvisation. Art, by its very nature, escapes locked down behavior. The oblique language of art remains a common and free agent existing on all levels, from the child who holds a crayon, to anyone who tries to express their experience symbolically, whether it be in the lyrics of a pop tune or a painted masterpiece. I will be convinced by any art, even the slightest, that has its own true way of being in the world and expresses direct experience of reality.
We need more improvisators capable of handling the unexpected or unforeseen. To improvise one needs a fine sense of balance, a compelling sense of timing, and a casual fearlessness. Even though art is common to all, it is important to be able to recognize greatness, or even the potential for greatness. The reason for rarity is the unlikely possibility that an artist is not only possessed with great talent, but also presented with great opportunity. Both elements are necessary.
A great work of art, has a life of its own, continues to be relevant forever. Regardless, art needs to roll up its dilemmas and work, not only because we need solace and inspiration, but for all those who are never granted the time for imagination. —Agnes Field
Reprinted from Hipfish March 2007 • A monthly column on art & aesthetics
For more info please visit http://www.fairweatherhouseandgallery.com/artists/Agnes Field
Save the date and time.
Seaside First Saturday Art Walk
Fairweather House and Gallery
AGAINST THE CURRENT
An exhibition curated by Agnes Field
featuring Agnes Field, Don Frank and Sarah Lippold
“Those that live for the arts, support the arts.”
For more info please visit http://www.facebook.com/Seaside First Saturday Art Walk