Thursday, March 7, 2013
Art Therapy is Torture
I used to think art was my "release," my escape from the everyday, the mundane, the stress, the work. Now I realize this is just a myth about creative people that I have believed for way too long. Making good art is not a therapeutic activity, much like writing a good paper is not a therapeutic activity. If making art is a calming activity then you are not making good art. Also, if you like the art you are making it probably isn't good either. I currently have no affection for what I'm making, and I think about it all the time and wonder why I was even doing it in the first place. What is the point of liking my own work? It's never going to get better if all I do is sit around and like it. Sitting around and hating it just makes me want to make it better, and do a lot less sitting, as well. Unfortunately, I can't get off my butt until spring break comes around, so until then I'll be engaging in some more art torture instead of patting myself on the back for a job well done. In a critique yesterday with Evan Baden, I almost started to cry- a first for me. I guess sometimes people cry during therapy sessions, but the point of that session wasn't to help me accept my flaws or get over a trauma. It was to emphasize my flaws and subject me to even more trauma. That's the difference between art therapy and real therapy, I guess.