Creative Courage

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Giverny

A single feat of daring can alter the whole conception of what is possible.”

Graham Greene, The Heart of the Matter

The year was 1874.  The art world would witness the first independent presentation of Impressionist art. If only we had a time machine to take us back, we would be in the presence of Cézanne, Pissarro, Renoir, Degas, Monet, Manet, and his sister-in-law Berthe Morisot.  They were considered lunatics in their day.  Louis Leroy, a French engraver, painter and successful playwright, was a vocal critic.  He wrote,

Impression I was certain of it.  I was just telling myself that, since I was impressed, there had to be some impression in it – and what freedom, what ease of workmanship!  A preliminary drawing for a wall paper pattern is more finished than this seascape….Wallpaper in its embryonic state is more finished.” (Referring to Claude Monet’s painting “Impression: soleil levant.”­)

And that, dear readers, is how the term, Impressionism, was established in the art world.

Creativity and artistic endeavour moves societies into new territory. Artists, musicians, writers, poets, philosophers, and scientists are the trailblazers who establish the structure for growth and knowledge acquisition.   Even today, they are at work.

“Everyone has talent.  What is rare is the courage to follow the talent to the dark place where it leads.”

Erica Jong