Why do I need healing as an artist?

I’ve observed in the last year or two other people’s opinion that artists — particularly artists of faith — need healing. It’s come up in a few different places that, were I not so lethargic this morning, I would dig up and cite.

The following is a bit of a rant inspired by this post over at Conscious, and Occasionally Organized, Ramblings. I’m tired of hearing from these Christian artist writer types that us Christian artists need “healing,” and that we’re “wounded.” What gives? Sure the church has ignored the arts, unBiblically, for decades, but not all of us are the stereotypical ego hounds artists are made out to be. Some of us, probably more than anyone in or out of the Church realizes, are generally stable individuals who can deal with the fact that current congregants have been improperly indoctrinated with platitudinous Jesus prints for the past 50 years.

Tangentially, I’m not sure how much I like the art as therapy movement. It’s not all bad as therapy, but it seems to be getting a kind of attention that makes it out to be more than therapy. Just because painting is good for releasing personal wounds doesn’t mean the product of these sessions is good for hanging on walls or in galleries.

End rant.


About pcNielsen
Paul Nielsen founded The Aesthetic Elevator late in 2005. He owns a piece of paper, located somewhere in his house (not on the wall), stating that he earned a B.F.A. from the University of Nebraska around about 2001. While there, he studied studied architecture, graphic design and ceramics, graduating with a degree in studio art. Paul presently serves as communications manager for a small non-profit doing their print design and marketing. He spends as much time sculpting in his studio as possible — which is not nearly enough. Visit his website at pcNielsen.com.

3 Responses to Why do I need healing as an artist?

  1. Julie says:

    I heartily second your last sentence.

  2. Mo-Coffee says:

    …unless those wounds help others identify and deal with their own wounds. But I hear ya’. There is a fine line between being honest about your brokenness and creating a romantic persona of a tortured individual who demands (whines?) to be recognized for his/her “genius.”

  3. pNielsen says:

    @ Mo-Coffee:

    That’s something I hadn’t considered in my rant-ness and is a good point, but wasn’t the sentiment I was addressing — if that makes any sense.

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