Renewal is a resuming of an activity or state after an interruption. Culturally we are experiencing a Renaissance moment of sorts, with many more people practicing art of all forms and even forging new genres of artistic practice. We have an “art practitioner” rich environment today. At one time there was a creative “class” of people who were doing creative work within a very limited community of fellow artists and patrons. Now folks who hadn’t considered themselves artists or storytellers before are now becoming cultural producers. The centers of creative activity have dispersed to welcoming communities. For decades, cities focused their efforts on building amenities and encouraging the so-called “creative class” to their communities, using that as a strategy for revitalization.
Renaissance means “rebirth” or “reawakening”. Creative discovery has reawakened. However, we face a crisis in meaning. Humans have been struggling to define what sets homo-sapiens apart for millennia. Aristotle writes in his Metaphysics “animals other than humans live by appearances and memories, and have but little of connected experience; but the human race lives by art and reasonings”. Let’s face it: today we feel less differentiated in that regard. Most people live by appearances and memories, with very little regard for art or history as a connected experience.
For forty thousand years “artists” were essential to the spiritual life of the community. Their task was to orient and adjust the gaze of their community using the outer world of images and architecture to focus on the inner world of the spirit.
Contemporary art is a very different kind of art than that practiced up to the 15th century. The City of God was to be replaced by the City of Man. Contemporary art is an art that takes place after the age of metaphysics and history, where all the imaginary significations that once used to anchor art in traditional meaning systems have disintegrated. This has produced a bifurcation of physical content and meaning. The interpretation, the creation of meaning, now lies with the audience.
Every time we at ViVO encage our work it is a renewed commitment to quality. We welcome the opportunity to support people in discovering seeing and feeling. Renewal for us is about being; with compassion and empathy, and commitment to excellence.