Monday, April 2, 2007

John Paul II: Artists, Be Yourself!

Not said quite that way. But on the second anniversary of his passing, here is a notable line from his Letter to Artists, which will be quoted often here:

"The history of art... is not only a story of works produced but also a story of men and women. Works of art speak of their authors; they enable us to know their inner life, and they reveal the original contribution which artists offer to the history of culture."

There can be as many types of artists and writers as there are individuals. "Works of art speak of their authors" and "enable us to know their inner life." This takes great courage, especially when formalists demand a uniformity of product. Greatness, and great writing, consists in developing the unique and special gifts given by our Creator and Father.

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