This One Goes Out To The One I Love
How fitting that the last day of January is set aside to celebrate " National Inspire Your Heart with Art" Day. It's hard to imagine a more perfect time- the day before February begins- to remember how art can inspire and move us. Art, in all it's forms and mediums, has been used as the expression of love since man was able to express himself. We see this in works from Rodin's sculpture, "The Kiss", inspired by an Italian noble woman's forbidden love for her brother in law, to Robert Indiana's iconic "LOVE" sculpture. In these uncertain times, we look to art to give us meaning and comfort, context and understanding. The late Carrie Fisher famously said, "Take your broken heart, and turn it into art". This message has been the inspiration for countless works of art. Artists can be moved by heartbreak, romantic love, loss of a loved one, unrequited love. The following are examples of art motivated by love that you may want to explore further:
Margritte "The Lovers" 1928
The shrouds over the lovers' faces indicate that they can never actually touch, or kiss. A masterpiece of sexual frustration and love as loneliness.
Frida Kahlo "A Few Small Nips (Passionately in Love)"
One of only two works of art produced in all of 1935, this painting was inspired by what a murderer uttered while on trial for stabbing his lover. "But your honor, it was only only a few small nips!'. Painted in response to learning of the affair her husband Diego Rivera was having with Kahlo's sister Christina, this is the ultimate expression of a woman's heartbreak.
Jean Michel Basquiat "Gravestone"
Painted on a series of a pair of wooden doors and what appears to be part of a desk in response to fellow artist Andy Warhol's death, this is a seemingly simple ode to the loss of a loved one. The black tulip is a typical commemoration to loved ones who have passed, juxtaposed with symbolic heart and skull imagery make this work a testament to heartache.
Sophie Calle "Take Care of Yourself"
A mixed media installation done in text, video and photography done after Calle was broken up with by an email with the closing line "Take care of yourself". Calle wrote,
"I received an email telling me it was over. I didn't know how to respond. It was almost as if it hadn't been meant for me.It ended with the words, "take care of yourself",and so I did.
Look for ways to celebrate "National Inspire Your Heart with Art" Day. You can visit a museum or gallery, read a book or listen to music. Teach someone an artistic skill, or start to learn one for yourself. Get outside and explore plein air painting or photograph the surrounding landscape. Above all else, care for your heart with your exposure to art.
We are so lucky to live in the San Francisco Bay Area with the multitude of art everywhere around us. If you are interested in visiting a local art installation, check out the following exhibits.
Second Friday Art Walk 2/10/17 http://fridayartwalk.com/
See it before it's gone! Frank Stella at the de Young ends 2/26 https://deyoung.famsf.org/
Legion of Honor- Monet the Early Years opens 2/25-5/29 https://legionofhonor.famsf.org/
All Power to the People Black Panthers at 50 OMCA closes 2/26 http://museumca.org/
Out of the Box: The Rise of Sneaker Culture OMCA now through 4/2 http://museumca.org/