Have you ever visited an art museum and were simply blown away by a piece on display? We are lucky that in Richmond, we have the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, which has an amazing collection to explore. Plus, admission is free! It has been a favorite place to take my girls. The last time we went, we saw this amazing piece by local artist, Stanley Rayfield. You really have to see it in person. It’s simply breathtaking.
But there are other pieces there, especially in the modern art section, which leave you wondering why they are special! There is a huge piece that is essentially a square, white canvas with 3 lemons depicted in a corner. If only I had thought of that…
But that’s one cool thing about art. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. What we find appealing can differ greatly from the opinion of our neighbor, and yet we are all correct.
Form vs. Function
We had a writing assignment in high school in my advanced composition class. Our teacher wanted us to discuss form vs. function. What I concluded is that while a chair is a chair, what makes a chair appealing is its form. Whether it’s comfortable, beautiful, a good size… all of these things are what make the chair enjoyable. Form matters. Form is art.
The Perpetual Crafter
As described in my bio, I consider myself an artist of sorts, but obviously no where near the level of what is on display at the VMFA! As a child, I would often sit at my craft desk in our family room and work on projects. I was pretty handy and making things out of nothing. I would spread out glue, add crayon shavings, and allow it to dry, creating a flexible building material for all sorts of things. My mom also bought me balsa wood in bulk packages, and I eventually built my own miniature house, complete with working drawers and cabinets in the kitchen with floors and walls created with wallpaper sample books.
As an adult, I have had many crafting phases. When scrapbooking was super popular, I was a big part of the competitive scrapbooking world. That is, the group of women who designed for scrapbooking stores, websites, and product lines, and who submitted work for publication frequently. I was even published about a dozen times! This combined my love of photography and my addiction to color. A couple of years ago, I went through a tie dye phase, creating shirts for runners and crossfit athletes. I also love to work with mixed media on canvas, especially inspired by quotes. These were picked up by a local gallery. I think the most wonderful part of crafting as an adult is the creative outlet it provides.
Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.Pablo PIcasso
Art is Therapy
Aside from viewing art, which can come in many forms, creating art can be therapeutic. What gets in the way of creativity? A messy space is one. I told you in my last post that I was working on cleaning up my office. It’s finally a functional space, and that has sparked my interest in making art again. It’s been super fun to take some time to utilize this outlet once more.
All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree.Albert Einstein
So while art can be beautiful, the process of making it can also be our way of expressing our love, our frustrations, our joys, our fears. Another way of expressing the unexplainable. That’s the power of art.
Do you view creative outlets as one way of self-care and improving your overall wellness? I think both appreciating and creating art can be therapeutic. Do you love art, too? I’d love to hear about it!
As always, I hope you all are safe and healthy.