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Art creates an analogy

August 16, 2012 Leave a comment

Art can be fascinating as well as equally intriguing. Quite often, I have come across pieces of art and artists who want to convey a message through their paintings, sculptures, music, films, graffiti, installations, etc. Sometimes the message is clear to an ignorant like me, sometimes it is hard to understand. However, it does get clearer once I talk to its creator and when they explain their perception of it. This always leaves me with one question – “Ok, I understand it now but how will it change anything? People like me will come, see and soon forget about it. Can art ever have any relevant impact?”.

I have never understood how art can bring about a change. I got a convincing reasoning for it, in the following quotes from JR

Art is not supposed to change the world, to change practical things, but to change perceptions. Art can change the way we see the world. Art can create an analogy.

He further continues, “Actually the fact that art cannot change things makes it a neutral place for exchanges and discussions, and then enables you to change the world”. I saw this very interesting TED talk of JR where he shows how he used his art to make a difference. He is a French street photographer who prints his pictures and pastes them on walls of cities across the world. Check out this talk to understand his idea for his art –

I would especially draw your attention to the part of the video from 15:47 to 16:56, where he becomes creative in pasting posters in India when he wasn’t allowed to. Also get a quick overview of his work from 17:07 to 18:35 and 20:20 onwards.

He has also started a project called “Inside Out“, where you can upload images to their website and they will send you back printed posters which you can paste in your community. Off course, the images and the idea of pasting the posters must have a social relevance. You may read more about it at this TED blog.

What inspires me about JR’s work is the new aspect of social relevance that he has brought to photography.

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