Art and Literature

Art is in part defined by its initial contact with my senses. All visual art: with my eyes, music with my ears, and many other art forms through an array of my senses: dance, theatre, opera, film, sculpture, and ceramics. Art goes on to stimulate thought, and touches the spirit. 

As well as what is meant, poetry and prose appeal through their sounds and rhythms. Perhaps the poem was the first form of words that became art. A word alone, two or more, their shapes and movement became the very stuff of art, but at what point does a word that means become a work of art?

Imagine this: I write the word and letter 'A', the first letter in my alphabet. I place the letter in the middle of a page in the centre of a blank book of 26 pages. I give this now to you as my idea. Is this art? For me this is simply an idea, however if I make a book that can be discovered by the senses where at its centre the letter 'A' can be found, and 

if I spend time and care on the book's making, this single letter becomes significant and revealing. I not only ponder on the importance words, even a single letter word, my sensory experience of the book elevates the idea into art: the first letter of my alphabet is transformed into an emblem of my language.

Literature is in part defined by its contact with my mind. The physical medium of literature, how it is sensed, seems secondary to its meaning. 

I read the same from paper, screen, through touch (Braille), or by listening.

Literature's substance, its meaning, has the same in common with all art forms. It first touches us through our senses.

The Craft of Art