I read an “artist’s” statement in a book where he talks about art and serendipity. He mentions without controlling the process, without making the process of creating art consistent and predictable, art is merely serendipitous. The comment made it sound as if being serendipitous was being lucky and was a bad thing.
Serendipity was coined by Horace Walpole (1717-97). He said he formed it from the Persian fairy tale “The Three Princes of Serendip”, the heroes of which ‘were always making discoveries, by accidents and sagacity, of things they were not in quest of.’ Sagacity is an important part of serendipity and is defined as: acuteness of mental discernment and soundness of judgment. A few of its synonyms are insight, perceptiveness and wisdom. In other words, you may happen upon a thing by accident, but it is your perception that allows you to create something new from the find.
To be serendipitous is not a bad thing. Call me crazy, but art is supposed to be serendipitous. That’s part of what makes it art. It is the artist’s insight and feeling that is revealed. This is not a predictable, repeatable process, but a feeling of what is inside the artist and their judgement of how to present this new find to the world.
Art should come from the heart and soul of the artist, not some controlled, predictable process. If art is a controlled, predictable process then anyone can create the same work over and over again. If art is controlled and predictable, it is no longer art.
Who would have thought that peering through my 60mm macro lens at a slab of rock that I would find a 100 square millimeter area that reflects a raging sea. Was it an accident I found this particular area on a slab of nephrite jade? Perhaps. But without the artistic vision to understand what I saw and what to do with my find, this piece of artwork may have never been created.
~ Daniel Kmiecik
~~~After the Import~~~
I reblogged this because the Import from another site apparently did not email its existance to my email followers or post it to other sites.