Philosophy of an Artist

What would you tell the future generations of artist if you could? (This will be a multipart series). 

This is something I ponder almost every week, being a professor as well as a working artist.

1. How can one do good for the world with their artwork? Milton Glaser talked about a book by Lewis Hyde called, “The Gift.” His idea was art is a gift that keeps us from killing each other. Glaser states, “That if you like Mozart and I like Mozart, the likelihood of us killing each other becomes diminished.” I truly agree with this. If you pick up and move to a new location, not knowing anyone, how do you find friends? You find them with commonalities. If you are at the library, you may stumble across a friend by striking up a chat about a book. If you are at the bar watching your favorite sports team, it could happen by asking the score of the game. Artist help create these commonalities. (Most artists). We link people together.

Have you ever been to a museum? What do you gravitate towards? Aesthetically you like some form of art. Everyone likes music, and have specific artists they gravitate towards. Take a look at the friends that you call close, do they have the same musical tastes as you? I am certain that they do. You talk about songs that you like. You tell them artists that they should listen to. These commonalities do help us from killing each other, they pacify us.

So what does all this have to do with what I would tell the future generations of artists? A lot. I would tell the future, to put artwork into the world, that creates these commonalities. As a way to leave the world a better place. (To be continued).

by Mitchell Eismont
Assistant Professor of Graphic Design at Central State University.
Owner of Eismont Designs, an International Design Agency.

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