March 10, 2006
I gotta find a good biography of Einstein. Everytime I come across some throwaway musing by the guy I am stunned. Case in point:
One of the strongest motives that lead persons to art or science is a flight from the everyday life. With this negative motive goes a positive one. Man seeks to form for himself, in whatever manner is suitable for him, a simplified and lucid image of the world, and so to overcome the world of experience by striving to replace it to some extent by this image. This is what the painter does, and the poet, the speculative philosopher, the natural scientist, each in his own way. Into this image and its formation, he places the center of gravity of his emotional life, in order to attain the peace and serenity that he cannot find within the narrow confines of swirling personal experience.
Interesting to imagine the crazy paint-splattered-on-the-walls artist as someone actually fleeing the real world, daubing together a bridge into some neater mental universe.
P.S. You should subscribe to Chip Scanlan’s blog; it’s good!