I haven't forgotten you. I won't say that life is getting hard, because it isn't. I just think that maybe I'm not tough enough for it. But we'll talk about that another time. Have we called yet? Will this letter reach you before the previous one? It would be strange if it did!! I don't have much time to write today, so as always, I wish you well. May you always look to the sky and find a view worth smiling at. You will find the piece on art I promised you in the previous letter below.
[Considering Art as language]
Art is language, or a kind of language, and therefore has the same value, if not greater, as language has to human civilisation.
When someone does not speak a language, it does not mean that they cannot understand,
or at least glean into what others mean to convey.
If someone is happy, and speaks with a smile, we can hear it in their voice. Even without knowing the cause of their happiness. You would not even need to see their smile to know if someone was radiant with joy.
Of course, many things are still left unknown to us if we do not speak a language. That's just how it works. Native speakers will also always have a deeper connection to the meanings conveyed compared to a fresh student. There is also the consideration that not everyone is equally sensitive or intuitive when it comes to the process of guessing.
Art is also like this. Art is the language of humanity, with infinite dialects that vary with culture and can transcend geographical boundaries. In both we find the importance of context and the presence of a greater shared knowledge that may eventually lead to the formation of culture itself.
Those with no knowledge of art, who lack art literacy. They are still able to feel or find meaning in works, though the experience may not be as complete. Although the less intuitive may miss out on the meaning entirely. This can be remedied with education and patience. We must not exclude those who shun us simply because they do not know.
When we hear that a language is dying out, we mourn the loss of culture, and of stories that will be lost to time. Yet, so many around us callously debate the question of art's necessity as though it had no such connection.
If Art is a language, then it is both necessary and at the same time, transcends necessity. Even if they were to kill art today, it will return in another form.
If human beings must communicate then Art must exist. However debased, however crude.
There is no choice on the matter.