What is Art?
by Yufei "Lillian" Xie
Water & Stone Intern from The Madeira School
I was troubled by this question since primary school. When my classmate had fun in art classes doing ceramics, drawing, and painting, I was doodling, and my mind went blank as my hands were hung in the air waiting for something to come up in my brain. I searched every corner in my mind; however, I could not even think of one interesting topic to draw about. All I had on my paper was a mix of different colors and lines. All messed up together. The teacher praised me as the "New Generation Picasso." I did not want to be "Picasso." Instead, I was more interested in becoming "Van Gogh" or "Monet," whose paintings are less abstract. The happiness in doing arts was never my thing. The frustration came up whenever I saw my friends creating beautiful sculptures or artwork. Never had I thought of myself as an artistic person, but the fact was that I was barely talented at all. Whenever it came to visual arts, I automatically turned into a numb fool whose creativity was hiding and could not be found.
As I became a high school kid, I realized that art is more than visual arts. There are many more categories such as performing arts, plastic arts, and decorative arts. The movie is art; Dancing is art; Music is art; Literature is art. Anything that involves creativity and imagination can be called "ARTS." I took Screenwriting and Creative Writing electives in high school, which turned out to be my passion. Rather than expressing my inner world with color and shapes, I prefer powerful words to illustrate my creativity. I enjoy creation with words and thus immersing my readers into a fictitious world. My writing is my art. My stories turn into hues when readers glance at them. My figures are moving and interacting every time the readers' fingers skim over the pages.
With coming of age, I acknowledge that people have different ways of voicing themselves through arts. Some choose to become actors, experiencing the character's life. In contrast, others compose music, telling their stories through beats and melodies. However, sadly, due to society's high-speed development, many have forgotten about their passion and love for a kind of art. They may have lost their hue, their notes, or their words along the way. In this internship at Water & Stone, I am given an extra opportunity to experience various arts in my work time. I try drawing each day and photo-taking. I enjoy how those forms of arts calm me down and inspires me to figure out the beauty in nature and daily life.
What is Art? This is a thorny question worth pondering and figuring out through a lifetime. Each individual has different definitions and experiences with this friend, but ultimately, we need to remember that it is indispensable. Art is the window for us to appreciate the beauty everywhere.
Emery started Water & Stone in 2015 to bring a more contemplative approach to health and wellness in NYC. She is inspired to combine her love of meditation, creative arts, and psychology to support others in bravely healing or daring to reach for dreams with the goal of living a fully engaged and fulfilling life. Since starting her company, she has gathered a diverse group of women with similar dreams to support people locally, nationally and internationally.