When we define art as the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, then “art,” would encompass all manner of media: paint, voice, writing, clay, movement, ink, sports, music, digital,etc. ”Art” encompasses all forms of human creativity and expression.
‘Awe’ is not limited to the vast and incredible feats of nature. Often, art seems to be inspired by an appreciation of the greater picture (awe) and an individual’s expression or interpretation of it. Gothic cathedrals, a concerto, an incredible moment in sports, ancient pyramids, poems, paintings, and other human-made works of art are known to inspire awe. Has a song ever made you cry? Have you ever seen a painting that inspired you? Have you ever gotten goosebumps while watching a dance? Have you ever looked up at a skyscraper and felt excited by its grandeur? If you can relate to any of these, then you have been awed by art!
“Because philosophy arises from awe, a philosopher is bound in his way to be a lover of myths and poetic fables. Poets and philosophers are alike in being big with wonder.” – Thomas Aquinas
- Psychology Today: The Science of How Avatar is Awesome An article on the awe inspiring art of James Cameron’s “Avatar” film. This piece briefly describes awe, and connects common elicitors with what is found in the film.
- The Healing Power of Art & Artists This website features a global community of artists and advocates raising awareness about how art serves as a catalyst for healing.
- The Bleacher Report: The Most Impressive Feats in Sports An article detailing 15 feats in sports that the author believes are worth marveling over.
- Buzzfeed: 20 Times That Art and Design Inspired Awe in 2013 A 2013 Buzzfeed article listing twenty incredible examples of modern art and architecture.
- SAAM – The Smithsonian’s Website The Smithsonian’s website – which allows the user to browse many of their art collections
- The Culture and Historical Archives of the Art of Burning Man Archives of Burning Man’s art installations, organized by year. Each piece includes a description of the art.
- ArtNet News: Oh, It’s a Giant Robo-Buddha: See the Most Mind-Blowing Art From This Year’s Burning Man A short article showcasing several pieces of art from the 2017 Burning Man.
- Why is Music a Religious Experience? HuffPost: Why is Music a Religious Experience?
- Shakespeare’s Sonnets A website containing all of the sonnets, complete with analysis, and definitions of harder to understand words and phrases.
Tools, Action, Practice
Take time to appreciate the art in your life. Music, sculpture, architecture, film – whatever delights you. Attend local concerts and gallery openings or find a new book or movie to watch.
Consider adding a soundtrack to your next vacation or big moment. Link a moment with a specific song so you can trigger a flashback whenever you need to. Do you have a song that always sends you back to a certain time or place? A wedding song might stir up all of the excited happy energy you felt at your wedding, so why not try the same for the next time you watch a sunset or go for a jog down a particularly beautiful pathway?
Find a new piece of architecture close to home that you love. Maybe there’s a particularly weird home, or an artfully made office building. Maybe the tile flooring in your local library is a magnificent piece of art deco. Notice something new!
Start carrying around a small sketchbook – write down your thoughts, sketch things that you find beautiful – capture your own moments of awe and embrace your inner artist!
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