Monday, October 12, 2009

Art Not Hate: Creative Responses to Conflict

Our times and our selves are defined by conflict.

We are highly evolved mammals with big brains that can do the most ethereal abstract mathematical reasoning, produce masterpieces of music and art, envision astounding future possibilities — including our own mortality.

Still, we are sensate and aggressive creatures who crave the tactile intimacy of our clan and fear outsiders — and will not hesitate to violently attack perceived strangers.

This issue of Views From CreativeLedge explores the tension between our conflicting human tendencies to create and collaborate or to kill each other and destroy the hard won achievements of human culture.

In a world that has witnessed between 119,000,000 and 265,000,000 state-sponsored homicides (depending on who is doing the counting) between World War I and the present, this is not an academic question.

Perhaps the most compelling quote on the subject of overcoming our conflicted nature is from Charles Darwin:

“In the long history of humankind, those who learned to collaborate and improvise most effectively have always prevailed.”


Blogger dtalbot13 said...

Thanks for posting this and focusing our attention on man's inhumanity to man. i was reminded of the work done by a Catholic priest who got his doctoral degree when i did. He told us of the kids on the streets of LA that were offered a paint brush, colored chalk and dance as an alternative to getting into trouble. Crime was deterred, lives were saved, all because the kids turned their creative energy into the arts and not into mischief and hate.
Paul Hawken's new book Blessed Unrest, while not focused on art vs hate per se, reflects upon over a million growing grass roots efforts to make this world a better place. He undertook to write a book on despair over the world's condition but it ended up a book of hope.
i look forward to seeing your exhibit at the museum.

October 12, 2009 at 4:55 PM  

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