Tuesday, January 19, 2010

"They cannot be destroyed..."

"In the face of such shape and weight of present misfortune, the voice of the individual artist may seem perhaps of no more consequence than the whirring of a cricket in the grass; but the arts do live continuously, and they live literally by faith; their names and their shapes and their uses and their basic meanings survive unchanged in all that matters through times of interruption, diminishment, neglect; they outlive governments and creeds and the societies, even the very civilizations that produced them. They cannot be destroyed altogether because they represent the substance of faith and the only reality. They are what we find again when the ruins are cleared away. And even the smallest and most incomplete offering at this time can be a proud act in defense of that faith."

Katherine Anne Porter, June 21 1940

*I've posted this quote before, but its wisdom is worth returning to in any time of crisis. The American Visionary Art Museum is one of many organizations raising money specifically to aid Haitian artists. They are selling Vodou flags like the the one here. See more at their slideshow. You can see a nice selection of works by Haitian painters at the Gallery of West Indian Art.


chayaruchama said...

Gorgeous stuff, M.

Poor Katherine Anne- such a brief, tempestuous life.

BitterGrace said...

Are you thinking of K. Mansfield, Chaya? KAP lived to be quite an old lady, though she did run around marrying much younger men during her middle years.

chayaruchama said...

I'm a ninny .