Da Vinci: Illuminating from Within

The Leonard da Vinci exhibit is on at Bunkamura until 6/10 and I REALLY recommend that if you can get to Shibuya see this outstanding collection by da Vinci and the coterie of other Renaissance masters influenced by his sublime standards of ethereal beauty. In comparing da Vinci with artists who emulate him, you can see in this show how artists struggled to paint and draw ‘elevated’ beauty. There’s a modesty and gentleness in da Vinci’s female figures that the others can’t copy no matter how skilled they are technically. What I found so moving in this exhibition is to see how da Vinci immortalized himself by infusing his soul into every line, every shadow, every sudden burst of light from impossible sources within. Isn’t that our ultimate aspirations as artists? To see our souls reflect back to us in our paintings? And how many lifetimes will it take to achieve?

Each time we create, we reveal from the unconscious elements of ourselves that were hidden from view. Rather than calling this a deepening of self-awareness I’d prefer to call it a lightening. Art is a process of illuminating from within. Creativity helps us understand ourselves from within.
The self that we know is a version of truth in that moment. Intuitive art captures the truth of time, place, state of mind and emotions. Whatever is going on inside is mirrored back in the creative moment. Look at Leonardo da Vinci. You’ll see the pinnacle of intuitive art when it merges with sublime skill and spirit.

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