August 31, 2012 at 9:09 pm , by Rafael Cardenas
August 31, 2012
If a piano is being played in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?
If you’re the one playing it, you know that the piano is making great sounds. It’s probably one of the best concerts ever performed. (Says you.)
I don’t know how to play piano but I LOVE to bang on the keys on the left side of the keyboard and then delicately select a few notes on the right side to balance my madness. I get a primal satisfaction from it. That’s all that matters when I’m doing it. The satisfaction that I get from allowing my gut to tell me how to move my hands up and down, left and right, freely. Try it.
Whatever I’m creating usually comes from a visceral need to build. When I have my camera in my hand it’s a need to capture, record and compile. When I have a pencil and a blank paper my hand immediately starts to doodle. We all do this I’m sure; create tiny bits of art in our daily lives.
But I imagine that most of the work in this world goes unseen by the masses. Good or bad, there has to be a gazzilion pieces of art that have never been seen by human eyes other than the artist’s. (And maybe his or her lover.)
There are a gazzilion journals with a trazzilion poems that have never been read. Lines scribbled with tears and blood describing love gained and lost. Essays in perfect prose written about a tree on a hill by the waterfall that only you knew. No one will ever see them.
Still, we can’t stop creating.
It’s a method of communication beyond words and punctuations, beyond-letters-and-the-spaces-between-them. It’s a way for musicians to pull from their innards the sounds of their struggle. It’s an outlet for a painter who never cries, to display vulnerability.
For who? For What? What if nobody ever sees it, or hears it, or holds it in their hands?
Who do we do our art for?
In my case: the creation process is for me, the exhibit is for you.
Photo: Rafael Cardenas. A student at Boyle Heights Neighborhood Music School performs outdoor.