The Eyes of a Child
I believe that. I believe young children are naturally creative and expressive and not embarrassed about putting themselves out there on paper because they haven't learned The Rules yet. They haven't learned what things *should* or *shouldn't* look like. They haven't learned to censor themselves. If they want to draw big scary monsters, they draw big, scary monsters without embarrassment, and without worrying about if such things exist (which, of course, kids know they DO...it's grown-ups who don't understand about monsters, and convince themselves that such things aren't possible). If little kids want their trees to have purple leaves, and a fish with wings and feet to sit in the branches of the purple-leaved tree, they DO it...until someone, somewhere, sometime teaches them that it's *wrong*...that the leaves should be green, and that fish live in the water, and don't have wings or feet, and they start to believe that what they can see and touch is more important than what they feel or imagine. I think what makes a person - an adult person, that is - an artist, is the ability to hang onto a small fraction of the ability to see the world the way a child sees it, and to filter that vision through years of experience, and give it a tangible form. It's easy enough to learn the principles of design, but much more difficult to know how to really SEE. I don't think the fact that a lot of people perceived the work of 4-year-old children as "real" art diminishes the artwork of the adults. I DO think it says we should value the artwork of children more than we do. And I think we should value the artwork of adults who remember what it is to see the world as a child sees it...as a place of wonder, and horror, and beauty, and frightfulness, and magic.
"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up." --- Pablo Picasso