Emotion and Art

The TATE put out a question/statement today.

"A work of art which did not begin in emotion is not art" - Paul Cezanne. Do you agree?

This is a question I believe takes more than just a flippant answer of I agree or disagree. Emotion is always. You are always feeling something good or bad. Emotion is unavoidable, everything ever done comes from emotion, which makes the question above a moot point. 

When I start to create a painting, there is always an emotion. The trick is to be able to work through all your emotions. They might effect my colour choice, the strokes, the composition, but they are always there and they are always changing. 

I don't believe in the "artist turmoil". Yes. This is a strong and valid emotion, one that shouldn't be avoided or ignored, but to rely on it so completely in order to make great works of arts is a fool's errand. Creating art because something bad happens to you is art therapy.

There needs to be an idea behind your artwork. Maybe it can come from an emotion you had about one subject or another, but what happens when that emotion is gone? If you don't have knowledge, a process, an idea, then you have only the instantaneous reaction. While this reaction has it purpose it should not be the only thing driving your work. 

I don't think the answer is a simple as yes I agree, while in some ways I do. I also want to add that is not the only thing that should be starting the work of art. There needs to be intelligence and passion, so that no matter what mood you wake up in, you can still work towards your creation goals. So I am one upping Cezanne. Presumptuous I know, but " A work of art which did not begin with purpose and passion is not art." Blair Lamar


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