Aldous Huxley penned “Brave New World” back in 1932. With prophetic vision, he painted a hypothetical future where, in a world I won’t delve into here, it’s worth exploring within the pages of his novel. In this imagined tomorrow, the soul, with its inherent fervor, enthusiasm, passion, and wild flights of fancy, is lulled to sleep, reducing life to an existential limbo.
The awake soul is discomforting; sometimes it leaps within the chest, performs acrobatics, isn’t always content, often desires more, yearns for the infinite and constant evolution. Yet, it seems out of fashion.
When we lose touch with our inner selves, the task of adult formation is to shake off the torpor, inertia, and intellectual laziness, to awaken the drive to learn anew, a sort of philosophical curiosity, a will to delve deeper. Years dedicated to studies often lead to excessive specialization; individuals become hypertrophic in certain areas. Specialization hardens, constitutes a comfort zone hard-won through toil, effort, time, and money. But man does not live by specialization alone. Life ushers in the chaos needed, forcefully evicts from the comfort zone, and in the face of a powerful experience, such as a crisis, specialization and know-how crumble, failing to answer life’s big questions.
A journey through artistic expression births new capacities, opening a window for new seeds to sprout.
The soul, though out of vogue, is the center of our existence, the breath, the color. We stand at the crossroads between remaining stagnant, offering the same response to varying situations, even expecting different outcomes, or evolving, nurturing new paths. Breaking a behavioral pattern, escaping a deadlock, demands effort, inquiry. The essence of work with art applied to personal/professional growth lies in facilitating this delicate transition.
In the workshop of personal/professional growth through art, the role is active. If the exercise demands sculpting a sphere, for instance, the participant must personally shape, paint, or whatever is required. The difference lies here: an active role and an instrument, the artistic instrument that transcends every pattern because it travels in its own dimension, speaks its own language, that of art.