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A blog dedicated to the Source of everything good.

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Science and art

There was a reference to this in the transcript I referred to in the last post:

In the mid-20th-century, classical music had become difficult to listen to, for a number of reasons, good and bad. One was that composers had felt limited by the confines of 19th-century musical technique, and wanted to explore a much wider range of expressions, even if they led into thorny territory. Another reason was a growing analogy between music and scientific research, especially among the increasing number of composers who were teaching in academia, freed by their secure institutional incomes from having to impress an audience.
(italics added)

This evening I read an article in the local paper about a scientist-turned-photographer*. His photographs of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska are currently on display at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. The artist, Subhankar Banerjee, is quoted as saying,
“Science definitely helped me immensely to deal with the equipment, the weather, and the conditions, but I feel science creates a very rational mind, and I just wanted my passion to take over. When you look at the work, it’s very much from the soul.”

Well, maybe these two quotes tell us something about the nature of science and its limitations as a philosophical basis for understanding life. Bravo to Mr. Banerjee for pursuing his passion and not denying it. Would that art would also refuse to be scientific or merely intellectual but retain its passion as well. Would that we as people would not deny key elements of our humanity, nor make idols of them.

*The link is to a different newspaper, but the same story.


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