Sunday, June 12, 2011

Wabi Sabi

"Wabi-sabi is the quintessential Japanese aesthetic. It is a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete. It is a beauty of things modest and humble. It is a beauty of things unconventional."

Periodically I find myself questioning the value and importance of art.  I will walk into a store like Target and see this overwhelming array of perfect designs.  Perfect circles and perfect birds stenciled in off beat colors like maroon and chartreuse.  These lovely designs are stamped and stenciled on plates, towels, toothbrushes, blankets , and clothes.  There is an offering of  endless array of perfect beautiful designs.  What's the point of being an artist, I would ask myself.  Then one day it hit me.  In the way that only the most transcendent of spiritual experiences can hit you.  Wabi Sabi.  Suddenly, I knew my time had come.  It is the best and most incredible time to be an artist.  Similar to the emergence of photography on the impressionist, because the advent of computers has allowed seemingly endless design possibilities to every lay artist on the planet.  But Wabi Sabi takes some skill, it takes love and patience.  Who needs a perfect circle when any person can get a perfect circle design from target.  My imperfect circle was hand crafted the colors were not perfectly even, The brush stroke was obvious and the place where my hand trembled is visible if you look for it.  I began to take a second look at the perfect masters and you know what I saw: Wabi Sabi.
This was the answer to my freedom.  Now every time I start to question whether I'm good enough or perfect enough I take myself back to that moment in the mall and remember I'm striving for a human experience not a computer generated one.

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