Why Do We Do It?

by debra mager


 I have been searching for the reason I have this new found urge to create art, having never done it to this degree until recently.  I've read many artist statements in which artists have expressed the deep meaning behind their art, or the deep rooted reasons they make the art they make. Until now, the only thing I've come up with is that I make art to make the people who see it happy.  I like whimsy and bright colors and joyful happy art.  But, when I read an article by Isadora Paz Lopez about her reason for making art, I identified strongly with what she said.  

"Two of the principal energies that move my life are art and love. Art is the expression of my spirit, what I try to give… and love is the necessity of my heart, what I try to get. It is not just the money I get paid for my work, it is also the love and gratitude I receive from people. That is food for my ego, but mainly, it is love healing my heart."

This captures it for me, too.  Artists, no matter how confident or even arrogant they appear, are often in search of some kind of healing.  Some part of them needs the validation, the accolades, the love they get when their art is applauded, cherished, appreciated, welcomed into someone elses life.  It is a salve for what ails us. That's why we do it.