The Duality of Art

Art has always been an absurd and dreamy pursuit to me. It’s creation and wild imagination. It’s not typical, not the routine way things go. It’s as exciting as diving into a cold pool on a hot summer day because it’s fun. But part of of me taunted by the thought that art is also a science, that there are certain strokes, dabbles, and colors that need to be adhered to, that art cannot be claimed by anybody. But my mom brought me up with so much appreciation for the arts: performing arts, design, craft, and as simple as fixing household furniture. From this appreciation, there is this inkling to create because there is much that has developed in mind, inside me that I could not contain myself enough. But again, I still couldn’t figure out how I am supposed to call myself an artist.

With this somehow boggling my mind, I thought that art is an interplay of things. It’s a duality, a spectrum that one can figure out where to place himself or herself. I may not be an experienced artist, but I have my appreciation and understanding of it in its profound, underlying construction.

Symmetry VS. Asymmetry 


In every art piece, there is always a sense of perfection on all sides. Symmetry is very much celebrated because there isn’t much issue as to the lines, the shapes, the angles, and the placement of objects.


On the other hand, there is asymmetry because of there is the idea that art is all about creativity and self-expression. Putting all shapes in a very unpredictable manner can be treated as art.

Precision VS. Freehand


Like the painting of George Suerat, the Un dimancheaprès-midi à l’Île de la Grande Jatte (A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte), art can be done in precision. For this art piece, pointilism was used wherein dots or points were meticulously dabbled to form a picture. The exactness makes art because of the definiteness and no room for error.


But, to the abstract artist, any piece is again an expression regardless of the medium or the strokes. Like any abstract piece, art is a human being’s creation. There isn’t accuracy necessary because it’s what the feelings and emotions manifest.

Fact VS. Meaning


Pablo Picasso created his Guernica after the bombing of the Spanish city of Guernica. It was a factual point-of-view that drove Picasso to do this piece. And every artist gets subjects from the surroundings, from what had happened or what is going on. Art is a reflection of society.


However, artists can be eccentric because even a blank space can be an art piece and may even cost so much. This is because art, in any form, has meaning. There is subjectivity in whatever form art is.

Realists VS. Visionary



The Spoliarium, by the Realist artist Juan Luna, shows a realist treatment to art. The subject is a matter of fact. But the concern of realism is the medium, the manner of creating the piece, from strokes to dabbles, from figures to forms. It’s all about picture out of the reality as clearly as possible.


But art can also a vision like any deviant art. Take for example Dadaism, a revolutionary genre of art. Art is replaced, edited, smoldered, repainted, and recreated from the original just so to show a message. Here, art plays an influential role. In this postmodern times, art doesn’t only have meaning or amusing roles, but significant parts in forming society.


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