Arts Matters

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A Touching Story

There being few lengths to which the author of Arts Matters would not go in order to secure the story, I found it necessary to take my first massage this week so that I could write with authority on the sense of touch. It being common knowledge that there are five bodily senses, this exploration …

Making Scent

An important part of the everyday aesthetic is the sense of smell. While it often works subconsciously, it can be because of an attractive smell that we feel good. With a bad smell, it’s the opposite. Smell is evocative. It reminds us of people or experiences; conjures images of past times. A friend told me …

Emotions

They get in the way of wise action, drive you to reckless decisions, have you in tears over small matters, or lead you to sacrifice everything in pursuit of a dream. The emotions are one of the most distinctive elements brought to the world by humanity (and a few other animals). At times they seem …

Making Sense 2

Being awoken by birdsong is the most peaceful start to the day, something you miss if you live in a city with few trees. Waves crashing against a beach similarly creates a sense of serenity. We are surrounded by sounds, natural and artificial, all of which provide raw materials for our art. Music is a …

Making Sense 1

Images hit the retina whenever our eyes are open. Mostly we let those images pass by, ignoring them in favour of more pressing thoughts. Sometimes an image deserves our attention and we take a perception, an action that makes sense of the visual manifold. There is a special kind of perception that we can take: …

Perfection

Knowing when to stop is one of the most difficult decisions of the creative process. It is not always easy to judge when a work is finished. Perhaps a painting needs one or two more brush strokes in a few places, a poem could do with an extra word added and a couple of them …

Pro-creation

Everyone does it alone, whether or not they would admit to it. It’s even better when done with another and there are some cases where it happens in groups. At all times it brings enjoyment. When done together with others there is perhaps the greatest pleasure, sense of achievement and satisfaction. You can do it …

What Science Cannot Teach Us

If I had a hammer, there’s lots I could do with it. I could crush a walnut, for one thing. But I might hang a picture on the wall, knock a bulge out of my car’s wheel arch, break some toffee, start a carpentry project. I could also use it to bash someone’s brains in. …

Censored

John Stuart Mill’s view of liberty was largely right, especially where it concerned freedom of speech and expression. We ought to have nothing to fear from the public airing of views with which we disagree, for instance, for that exposes their stupidity. Besides, suppression of opposing views is rightly taken to be a mark of …

Disco Potential

A year or more ago someone remarked that they didn’t know what musical universe I inhabited, given that I’d expressed a diverse range of likes. It’s true; I like all sorts. The genre doesn’t matter as long as it’s good. But in my youth, there was one kind of music I just couldn’t appreciate: disco. …