For so many years, art has been part of society…but have you ever wondered where it all started? Who started it? The opportunities that art gives to people benefit the population in such a way that almost 2 million Americans describe their occupation to be an artist today. And that’s just in America. Though art isn’t just painting, sketching, sculpting and more…it’s a way that much of the population expresses feelings today. Whether you’re angry, sad, happy, annoyed, disgusted, excited, or anything else, you can splatter your feelings on a surface and make a masterpiece. 

When was the last time you went to an art museum to reflect on the amazing work created by others? 

The Beginning

There is so much information in the world today, it’s hard to know what’s right and what’s wrong. Likewise, historians and artists are uncertain about the true beginning of art, but there are a few leads. One thought is that art was created in the Paleolithic era. It is said that the oldest human art was found dated back to the Late Stone Age, from around 40,000 or 70,000 BC. These creative works made from shell, stone, and paint by the Homo Sapiens used symbolic thought.

One very famous form of art, though there are many, is painting. History claims that the oldest known paintings are approximately 40,000 years old; found in both western Europe (Franco-Cantabrian region), and Indonesia (caves in the district of Maros, Sulawesi). Although painting is very well known for many years, the first and oldest form(s) of art were petroglyphs (cupules: cup-shaped organ, receptacle in plant/animal).

The Objective

Many people believe that art comes from within, from the heart, and that if one does not have ideas in one’s mind, he/she is not an artist. But the truth is everything but that. Art is something that describes emotions and feelings, though it is not said anywhere that art requires creativity. One example of that is how many artists take ideas from other artists, and that is totally fine. Ideas are sources of knowledge, and with ideas, the world progresses. Every famous time period in history has had ideas within it. Take the Renaissance, for example. So many artists, engineers, architects, and more came to be what they were, from ideas.

In the recent art world, it is known that Paul Gaugin’s masterpiece, “Spirit of the Dead Walking” was inspired by Édouard Manet’s “Olympia,” where Manet himself was inspired to make “Olympia” by knowing of Titian’s “Venus of Urbino.” Knowing that art isn’t just a carbon copy of some other piece is just as important as knowing that each individual has his/her own thoughts. An artist may just be like how you, the reader, are, but he/she might also be someone with hair or other things that you would find…interesting.

Art bonds people together, and the feel of art is different for every person but as long as one is happy with what one is doing…the art will live on…

ARTICLE WRITTEN BY: Tanisi, Student Advisory Board

Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time

-Thomas Merton