Or why we have to search for the art surrounding us? by Amaliya Mindeva

Without a shred of shame, I can proudly say I consider myself a very artistic person, who can appreciate art in every form. However, before I continue I want to clear something up – art is not only Mona Lisa at The Louvre. Art is not only Puccini with La Bohème. Art is not only Orson Welles in all his movies. Art is everywhere around us in various shapes and sizes. That is of course if we aren’t too busy with trivial everyday problems, walking around as if we are blind to our surroundings. We can find it anywhere, if we want to!

The idea for this discourse came to me from a very, at first sight, ordinary night with my best friends. We had decided to escape from the loud city for the weekend and we rented a cute little cabin in Yundula. Our entertainment for the night was already chosen – we hung a white sheet on one of the walls of the cabin and with the help of a projecting machine – we were going to have a movie night under the stars. Knowing me all too well – my friends let me choose the movies. Gatsby and Casanova – because both movies are mass-oriented enough to be liked even by someone who couldn’t care less about cinema, but also done well enough to satisfy my ART soul.

We started with Casanova, because I have a soft spot for Gatsby and Fitzgerald and wanted to save the best for last. What better than to sit on a field in a warm autumn night, drinking wine and enjoying the magnificence that is, or at least was (May he rest in peace) – Heath Ledger. The movie and the acting suck you in. In that moment I realized – our idea for a relaxed night is not only leaving the fast-paced city behind, but also to ignore reality in general. Double escape! For me art has always been a way to mute the things that bother me. My friends did exactly the same thing without realizing it. They cleared their minds using art. And of course who doesn’t want to relax and be far away from their problems? It’s almost like an instinct for self-preservation. A way to keep our sanity. We quickly chat about Casanova and it’s time for my favorite.

I always thought of Gatsby as so much more than just a love story. I find truly inspiring the idea of turning your life into art. That is exactly what the poor man – Jay Gatsby – does. Let me repeat, I ignore the fact that he does this in the name of an ungrateful woman (yes, we can be like that sometimes!). To dedicate your life to beauty! How idealistic, but in the same time so unrealistic. Well, yeah, these days – that is impossible. We live in a time that gives us a feeling of false freedom, when in reality restrictions construct our society. Meanwhile in the 20s – alcohol and feelings in big quantities for everyone! In the 20s, you can be whomever you want – and he chooses to be a person who is art. A person who lives for the others. Someone who gives you hope and optimism, even when it’s hard even for him to find them sometimes. Highest form of altruism, which I have never witnessed in real life – and how sad is that. To be that kind of person you have to be artistic. You have to have a vision and the ability to see the art even in the strangest places, to be able to put the spotlight in the right place. Two things that are critically important – a lot of soul and a lot of intelligence. Two things we are in dire need of these days.

I am trying. I don’t have the courage to even think I can be such a person, but I am trying. And for me effort is the way to go. If we never even try, there is no way something is going to happen. You try once maybe you fail. You try a second time – you fail again. One of these times you try – you will succeed. Maybe on you third try you will see something beautiful in the otherwise grey tram, that will make you happy. For example, the girl drawing on a wrinkled piece of paper, so absorbed by what she is doing – she misses her stop. On your forth try maybe you will notice the ironic graffiti Banksy style on the building next to yours.



Therefore, we try, and try, and try, and try, until we start to appreciate everything that life has to offer us. Everything that we would usually pass by. I am sure – it is infectious. I am sharing this with you with the hope it affects at least one person…

And maybe one person will start to take notice of the art around him. And maybe he will share this idea with someone. And maybe we will create a new type of infection that brings joy. Even if it’s not joy – it will have a SOUL, it will help us keep our sanity. So I am giving you a part of my soul, in order for you to rediscover yours. Let’s relieve the world of the numbness that keeps drowning it.

Give me some soul, give me some emotion. There is nothing stopping you! I promise you these are inexhaustible resources.