Where an artist can imagine the mother of the world as a sharp-beaked bird, as frightening as she is serene. Another artist imagines that same mother with three breasts and a single eye on her cheeks. A sculptor can create a kiss that echoes around the world, a painter can paint self portraits that show us the progression of his life, from youth to age, and we know him.
Where writers can imagine the future and re-imagine the past. Can write us into a world where a man spends months in a small boat with a tiger or a world where everyone except the narrator is blind. Write a world where we believe in dragons walking city streets or the end of the world as a whimper rather than a bang.
Where we see freaks and a photographer sees art, turning those once frightening people into images that will haunt us forever. Where a photographer takes us into a war thousands of miles and decades away and makes us smell the gunpowder, hear the screams and moans of the wounded, makes us feel the pain, the sorrow, and yes, the exhiliration of being in the midst of chaos, still living, still fighting.
Where composers ask us to hear the silence rather than the notes. Or who create music to compel us into another world, another future. Where lyrics can make us cry, make us sing, make us crazy. Where a single instrument can sound like a mountain walking and a baby crying.
Where dancers can transport us from a small seat in a tiny auditorium to a country halfway around the world, and then bring us back, better than when we left. When a small and fragile human body has the power to be more than flesh and bone and blood, to be everything. Or nothing.
Where architects design buildings that change the world and then change it again. Where men and women imagine space and then build the machines that take us there.
Art is undefinable and unstoppable. But even though we can’t define it, we know it because it touches us, amazes and enchants us, conquers and frightens us.
And we wouldn’t have it any other way.