Art Vs. Real Life

Work of Art Vs. the Real Life of an Artist: Know the True Difference

We may be wrong to look for the exact and thorough expression of an artist's personality within his own creation. Read why in this article...
Although we may feel tempted to investigate an artist's personal life in order to find there are certain elements that might have inspired his creation, this may be wrong and not from the moral point of view first of all, but rather from a more technical perspective. The role of an art work is to create a fictional, imaginary universe which may have as its basic function that of separating from any feeling that might have caused the artist to start on his creating journey in the first place.
In his work entitled "Aesthetics", Lalo (Édouard Victor Antoine Lalo, French composer of Spanish descent) presents us with five main points to explain the differences between the artist and his work. Firstly, art could be clearly placed outside real life, within the world of aesthetics, in a world of relations between shapes and colors, or of musical harmonies and combinations. In some artists, the technical function of the art can become dominant and can set itself free from all the others. Secondly, art can have the power to intensify and embellish a beautiful life. It can idealize life, continuing it and making it more beautiful. Thirdly, art can cause us to forget about the real life. In this case it is diversion or escape, exaggeration or luxury. In this case, it rather expresses what lacks the real life personality than what it really is. But it can also express that side of the artist which he wants to detach himself from, to forget about. In this respect, art can perform a cleansing, liberating function.
All these different motifs can occur mixed at the very same artist. On the other hand, the technical function which the artist isolates is intrinsic and immanent to all the other functions. The artist tends to pour his feelings into certain molds. The artist is likely to indulge into this state. And most of often, the subject represents only a means for the work of art. A certain subject is chosen because it may constitute raw material for aesthetic valorification from the part of the artist, and not because it is on the author's mind.
From another perspective, all artists share certain common things. For instance, their art generally has the function of creating a world in which the human spirit may feel at home. And before accomplishing that, the human spirit must first build itself up and it must connect feelings with forms. The creating artist can reach the unity of his whole personality by his artistic creation.
We may say that there are certain artists who do not treat art as a means of explaining and contemplating their passion, but rather as a means of living it and liberating themselves from that passion. They fill their representation of reality with many elements taken from their personal life, with its feelings and attitudes. But by allowing their very own personal inner struggles and spiritual issues enter the artistic realm of their creation, these artists may often offer a rather limited and narrow view on things. Some critics say that it's a sign of an inferiority from the part of an artist to put too much of his own life into his work. Delacroix says that there are artists who express themselves through their works, in the sense that they express their very own personal thoughts, feelings, attitudes, and so on. Some may exploit the sensitivity of their present life; others make use of the childish sensitivity of their early age. But the act of inspired creation is most certainly something quite different from an artist's biography. The French writer named Gustave Flaubert advised writers never to write about themselves. He explained that the artist's presence in his work should be the same as God's presence within his creation - i.e. reader must sense the omnipotence and omnipresence of the author without seeing him.
The Czech philosopher and psychologist named Emil Utitz (1883-1956) said that a young man who sings about his beloved no longer feels the need to sing when he holds her in his arms; on the contrary, the poet still feels the need to sing about his beloved when he holds her in his arms, because his beloved cannot replace his art work.
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