Monday, December 18, 2017

A Muse Is No One

On paths in the Garden of the Gods I found a Muse. Likely my first; over a decade ago. A Muse is no one; a Muse is faceless.

I believe that a Muse doesn't appear until you develop a new pair of next eyes. One pair of my next eyes that revealed my first Muse arrived in late 1999 or early 2000--my memory isn't exact--when I converted my first digital camera at my job where I had a clean room and could disassemble opto-electronics without getting dust on the parts inside. Besides obvious applications at work, yet not being an artist at that time, it took a few years to find my Muse in this new hyperceptivism art medium. 

Until I could see the world with rendered views of next eyes, my Muse stayed behind the landscapes I explored in the Colorado Garden of the Gods.

I began thinking recently that a Muse emerges after a new art medium, a new art technology, is developed.  The Greeks told us that a Muse is each of nine goddesses who preside over the arts and sciences.  

The sciences--inspiration to develop a technology behind new art movements may require a Muse.  Science and invention: which berries and dyes and pigments are marked upon the walls of the cave. Which oils and acrylics and watercolors brushed on the canvas. Which minerals to form clay.  Which films to load in cameras.  Which semiconductors to sputter and deposit for making sensors and displays. 

Technological developments of media usually precede a new art movement defined by the Muse. The artist endeavors to  forge imagination into tangible artwork that is beyond fad and fan, an enduring and transformative vision

First our views are transformed and then we transform technology or art into a new vision. But is the inventor, the artist their own Muse?  Not really.  So what does the Muse create?  It's interesting to me that the word muse is a part of the word amusement.

Despite the Greek definition, and some individual artists naming a person as their Muse, I don't really accept that the Muse is an individual or even a collection of individuals. 

For me, the Muse is a projection of one's work on others. It is the artist, the writer, the inventor projecting self onto those who happen to be the mirrors around him or her. The mirrors can be shiny, flat and clearly self-reflecting or might be warped like the mirrors in a fun house showing distortions of self.

As an example, some of the mirrors inspiring this blog are music and lyrics from my early adolescence that only made partial sense then. Now less distorted with more life experience, they show me how we continually project ourselves with our Muse over our entire lives.

Youth with feelings of uncertainty, hopelessness--what will I accomplish? Do my ideas matter?  Then years later with a dozen patents, books published, art representation in hypercetivism, ascending high in my career field...and yet I still lie awake at night wondering what have I really accomplished? Where is my Muse now

Like our physiological eyes, which become myopic and dim with age, the last Muse and our latest pair of next eyes can grow dull. 

Finding the new Muse, the Faceless No One, is not always easy.  In fact, it is a solitary, usually painful process, to pull off the scabs or scales blinding our next eyes.   Yet, aren't the blind most adept at searching in the dark night of the soul to find new meaning?