Artists

David Cowles

Jun 27, 2021

The existentialist philosopher, Martin Heidegger, defined “art” as anything that shows us something new about the world, ourselves, or our place in that world. Most of us think we gain new insights through expository prose (like mine). What a paltry palette that gives us! Sure, expository prose can teach us much…but not that much. The medium of expository language is extraordinarily limited.

The existentialist philosopher, Martin Heidegger, defined “art” as anything that shows us something new about the world, ourselves, or our place in that world. Most of us think we gain new insights through expository prose (like mine). What a paltry palette that gives us! Sure, expository prose can teach us much…but not that much. The medium of expository language is extraordinarily limited.


Of course, “artists” can bend language to be more revelatory: consider novelists, poets and dramatists. But still, how much more range does the painter, the sculptor, the architect have! But the real winner winner chicken dinner has to be the musician (composer and/or performer). You can learn more about our world and our place in it from a single Brandenburg Concerto (or from a superlative jazz improvisation) than from all the essays of Emerson (np disrespect to that great thinker).

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