What makes a work of art resonate?

3 thoughts on “What makes a work of art resonate?”

  1. You must season at every step!

    I have never heard this about cooking, and now I am wondering if I have been doing it wrong this whole time! I have heard that when using dried herbs, it is best to add them at the beginning of your cooking process, such as when you are sautéing onions and garlic, because the oil and heat helps release the flavors. For fresh herbs, it is best to put those in near the end, because overcooking those will actually dull their flavor. I am going to have to learn more about this.

    But your post was not about cooking, but rather literature. You have certainly piqued my interest with both of these books now. It certainly seems like the unique structures they have chosen result in some very thought-provoking reading. I am currently in the middle of “More die of Heartbreak” by Saul Bellow, which I picked up recently at a local free book library, based only on the fact that I had read “Dangling Man” by Saul Bellow when I was in college and I remembered liking it. I am about 20% done with the book, and very little has happened so far. I am wondering if much of anything will happen. Frankly, I don’t mind if nothing happens. The style of his writing fascinates me, and the character development is phenomenal. I actually don’t really like books with lots of plot. In my opinion, to get at that “universal” aspect that you mention, the author really needs to spend lots of time on character development. Books with lots of plot twists make you wonder what is going to happen next, but books with character development make you think about your own character, and how you fit in the with the world.

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    1. I think the “season at every step” might specifically mean with to salt (and pepper) rather than herbs, that’s a good point.

      I don’t usually mind if nothing happens either 😂. I totally agree about character development, and I hadn’t thought about how plot twists do primarily keep you focused on what will happen next.

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  2. Brilliant. I find your comparison between writing and art, really interesting. Particularly when it comes to a ‘surprising structure’. This made me think of a painting’s composition. I always find an unusual, or surprising, composition resonates with me more than classical composition, particularly when it comes to contemporary art. It makes me stop and think. It can heighten an emotion. Also, reading your words ‘awe and wonder boost happiness’ made me smile! Oh yes! I relate to this completely! My husband and I are currently on a one year gap-year-for-grown-ups. Or a Creative Sabbatical, we like to call it. We are filling our life with as much ‘awe and wonder’ as possible by travelling around the more wild parts of Australia. It’s a huge source of happiness, which I hope will linger for years. Again, great post. Those books are on my wish-list for sure.

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