Our world is constantly changing at every moment, every day, forever. We as individuals will change and evolve with time whether we wish to or not. Our cultures and traditions will change, but one of the few ways we have stayed the same is our choice of representation. Art has always been a large part of human history and our understanding of the world as it is and as it was long ago. Historians will use pieces of art from cave drawings to massive sculptures to help analyze and describe different points in history. Bear with me when I say that it isn’t the only thing they use to determine the culture of a time period, but it is a large part of the process. Just as humans do now, we choose to create art based on what we know and understand, what we hope for, and what is happening in the world around us. This helps historians understand the type of life people are living, their status, even what type of governmental system they have.
The earliest found art is over 40,000 years old and consists of cave drawings and a sculpture known as “Venus of Willendorf.” That depends entirely on the idea of art, when shells and weaponry can be dated back further than 500,000 years ago, as well as what we believe to be art now compared to then. Obviously items such as this can have many different meanings and symbolism to a culture, but it is argued that strictly necessity-based items can’t entirely be classified as art. Art being an expression of emotion, creativity, and imagination; which could mean the arrowheads, depending on what exactly it was.
Art can even depend on the necessity-based objects, the Iceman named Otzi was found with a copper axe and yew handle. Now seen as a beautiful piece of cultural art and history, it was originally meant for killing, whittling, hacking, etc. It can tell more about their history than you would imagine on first inspecting it. The prominent minerals and resources nearby, what is rare is often viewed to be the most important and most valuable. Copper in this area was a show of great status and strength, meaning he was a leader of the village he was part of at the very least. More than that, art has grown incredibly across time, numerous mediums used to change and represent different parts of life. With cave drawings, to metals and other natural resources, to canvas and paint, even using our own bodies as pieces of art.
The Renaissance period is still one of the most famous time periods for art and history. A defining time for rebirth and revitalization of culture and traditions, depicted in their way of life as well as greatly in their art. A link between art, history, and science, the time period inspired by life itself and a search for understanding of the human form. The unforgettable Vitruvian man, drawn by Leonardo de Vinci in 1490 depicting the beauty of humanity. The inherent ideas and values of beauty we see in humans, the symmetry and complexity that is our entire culture. Using art as an exploration of creativity and inspiration for the world, the beauty these artists saw in humanity and what we could be. The advancements in scientific knowledge changing and molding the way we experience life and see things beyond what we had imagined. Similar to how it does now.
Modern art is similar in the expression of self and beauty. Outward or inward, disgusting or delightful, our understanding and representation in the world comes a great deal from our artistry. Why else would we have competitions to see who could make the most remarkable and innovative buildings or pieces of art or food. Our exploration of culture and the world, our traditional and non-traditional views becoming ever more apparent in our lives. The interconnected reality of our world and our people seeming to become more apparent to those with their eyes open. Art and the development of our cultures have never been more readily available. We are standing at the precipice of possibly the greatest artistic technology in history. Not only does this new mixed reality tech allow us to create completely new pieces we could have never dreamed of putting on a simple 2-dimension surface, it allows us to re-imagine what has already come to pass. You can recreate the entirety of the Sistine Chapel as a square inch sized building and have it printed out as a souvenir. We can create more, no longer bound by pen and paper or canvas and paint brush. Yet still being able to use everything we used to know in the same way we loved. More logistics and history on mixed reality technology to come. Check us out next time for a deeper understanding of how the tech works and how it has been tied in to our vastly growing existence!