Wednesday, January 11, 2017


“[Art] looks at things in the light of all the different sorts of significance they could possibly have.” That’s from Alva Noe’s Strange Tools: Art and Human Nature. This concept will form the basis of my Modern Poetry course this semester. How do we begin to explore “all the different sorts of significance” various “things” can have? What “things” do we choose to consider? War; technology; the subconscious; perception; individual human emotions such as love and how they find relevance amidst all these “big” things…

And this is also where art does what politics cannot. Art encourages new ways of seeing. William James (one of the usherers-in of the modern era) recognized that ours is “a pluralistic, restless universe, in which no single point of view can ever take in the whole scene.” Even before the concept of “a pluralistic, restless universe” was put into words, art was already exploring ways to perceive what was multi-perceivable, ways to imagine the multi-imaginable.

We need this more than ever, these reminders “of all the different sorts of significance” of things.


                the entire lake
in winter shards the lake
                   entirely lake

1 comment:

  1. I just read the beginning of that book @ Amazon and ordered it -- so fascinating! I think Megan will like it too, she is an artist and fascinated by evolution. Thanks for sharing it here.