Art and Wonder

“Art is in the eye of the beholder and everyone will have their own interpretation” 
I often wonder about art, I sometimes say, “I don’t get it”. Why do people find beauty in such different things? I consider art to be something that has been created with imagination and skill but has emotions from the creator woven into it. 
Is art used to express ideas and feelings or to evoke them, or both? 
I recently made the decision to try to shop in small, local businesses since I would love to take every opportunity to support my fellow creatives. I also understand the impact the last year has had on small businesses, being part of one myself. Since Christmas was around the corner, I ventured out to find some quiet places to shop. This brought me to a little gallery featuring some amazing local artists. It was here that I stumbled upon the ‘Duchess’ print that I purchased.
The Duchess by Ross Muir
The Duchess is a perfect example of a work of art that has inspired wonder in me! To say I had an immediate emotional response is quite an understatement. She made me smile and almost cry at the same time. She was looking at me, I could almost hear her say something, she had to come home with me! I loved the style, the darkness and the textures. 
I also enjoyed the reference made in the piece to Scottish culture, bringing a humor and relevance to the work that I felt connected to. To explain a little further, in Glasgow, we have a statue beside the museum of modern art of the Duke of Wellington. There are few more iconic images of Glasgow than that of the Duke of Wellington on horseback, with a bright orange cone perched neatly on his head. 
According to Raymond Hackland, the cone represents an important part of the city’s identity – Glasgow’s unique sense of humour. There was even a replica of the statue that appeared in the opening ceremony of Glasgow’s 2014 commonwealth ceremony, that’s how dear the ‘cone heid’ is to us. 
And then… the lovely man who runs the shop told me the story of the artist!  You can find his work and story here if you’d like to know more. The Duchess is now hanging on my bedroom wall and makes me smile and warms my heart, a great example of the wonder that art can bring to our lives!
Some questions this brings to mind about art and our children… What art are we exposing our children to?
Do the dances we create together, the imaginative voices we hear in role play or the way we use materials with the children to sculpt and manipulate into wonderful models and responses evoke emotions and feelings?  
Do we just offer artistic playful interactions because we are expected to or do we want to introduce beauty, wonder and the imagination to our children’s days? 
Which of your children will create beautiful music, find new ways to express their ideas and emotions or design a futuristic but nostalgic building? Will they do this because of a little piece of you? 
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