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"There is a way that nature speaks, that land speaks.  Most of the time we are simply not patient enough, quiet enough, to pay attention to the story." ~Linda Hogan

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Artists & Suffering

Many artists have created great & original works in spite of disease.  Mozart created the Requiem on his death bed; Van Gogh created masterful paintings in a state of mind filled with trouble & dis "ease"; Renoir created his last great works while nearly completely immobile & suffering much pain.   He is even recorded as saying, "The pain passes but the beauty remains."  That is devoted Love for Beauty!

Yet if these artists had a choice I believe they would have preferred to be pain free, & certainly not on their death bed, in order to create the magnificent works of beauty.  

Many artists & critiques have argued that pain & suffering are actually necessary for being creative.  

Two Types of Suffering

1. Suffering from growth & artistic challenge

2. Suffering from unnecessary illness & foolish lifestyle. 

Regarding the first type, the creative process is not always easy.  Often times artists must struggle greatly to overcome challenges & pains in the physical, mental & spiritual processes of creation.  The very process of artistic growth involves necessary suffering for most every artist.  These sufferings are real, & very much part of the higher levels of the human creative process.

Regarding the second type, often times people & artists don't know how to or care for their own well being.  In short, there are many lifestyles which encourage disease, illness & financial suffering, which in actuality can be avoided.  

So, great art requires the type of suffering that the human creative process demands, but it does not require the type of suffering that we bring on to ourselves.  Don't believe someone if they tell you that you have to suffer (unnecessarily) to create great art.  Yet don't believe someone if they tell you creating great art is not a form of suffering.  In a real sense, one part of being a painter is overcoming pain.

 

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