Art: (n) the various branches of creative activity, such as painting, music, literature, and dance.dictionary with letter A

Probably one of the more pretentious things a mere mortal can speak aloud is the proclamation: “I am an artist.”

Even though it is said more often than comfortability allows, it is a presumptuous thought. Why?

Well, first of all–art is in the eye of the beholder, not in the mind of the “presumer.” In other words, if someone wants to call me an artist, I can humbly deflect the praise, but blame them for the event.

Even though I have written, recorded, sung, performed and gyrated my talents in many different ways over the years, I daily realize that to create art requires three very distinct purposes, uniting as one:

1. Inspire.

It is my firm belief that art should inspire us. I know this will meet with some disagreement, but I do not think that movies, books and songs which are depressing, fatalistic and portray humanity as worthless are art. They are intriguing diversions for those who are looking for a reason to confirm their depression.

2. Entertaining.

Yes, I think art should make our minds dance with new ideas while either tickling our funny bone or massaging our heart. I will even say that I’ve been entertained by things that have aggravated my emotions.

3. And finally, I think art should make us hunger and thirst.

Preferably, for righteousness, but at least, an appetite should be developed for more than the bland diet that the status quo often offers in the great cafeteria line of life.

I do not want to become disheartened or faithless by peering into the disgruntled by-product of the souls who insist they are artists.

Life is too short to be pissed off … and it is certainly much too brief to spend all of your creative energy merely trying to piss off others.


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Thank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) —  J.R. Practix


2 comments on “Art

  1. Austin Starr says:

    that’s an interesting thought — that art should inspire and not be depressing. But, my question is — who’s gonna decide what’s what? You may be inspired by something that I find boring and I may be amused by something you find depressing. So who’s making this call? The only way I can see that working is if, in the old adage, art is in the eye of the beholder. So you dismiss the sardonic I find so much pleasure in as ‘not art’ and I could dismiss what inspires you, but not me as ‘not art’ too.


    • jonathots says:

      Dear Austin, How terrific to hear from you! And what a noble and valid point you make. Yet I will tell you, after viewing the world around me steer itself into a celebration of “difference” for nearly two decades, with the only real conclusion being that we stand at a distance from one another, pointing and saying, “you are different,” I have decided to encourage the similarities within the tribe, and those universal instincts which press us toward great notions like appreciation, gentleness and edification. Merely joining the debate about what is art and what inspires, I fear, may just broaden the chasm of misunderstanding instead of building bridges to our common humanity. You and I would probably be shocked how similar our tastes would be in being inspired and entertained. We came from a common garden and found ourselves thrust into a jungle. I just think it might be prudent and productive to reclaim the Garden. Thank you for your kind comment and stimulating thoughts. I was thinking of you.

      Yours, Jonathan

      On Mon, Feb 9, 2015 at 8:07 AM, Words from Dic(tionary) wrote:



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