Upon reading the first chapter of Rowan Williams’ Grace and Necessity, I cannot help but to have been struck by specific points. What I understood from the chapter was that whatever our intentions for a piece of work are, they will show in the piece of art. For example, if I decide to sketch an abstract design that gives people the impression of relaxation, before I even begin my sketch, I have already determined my intention and purpose for the design. That will then show in my design.
One of the things that stuck out to me was William’s idea that beauty doesn’t tell you anything. He states that “Beauty is not, … a single transcendent object or a kind of truth – that is, it provides satisfaction, joy, for the human subject, but does not in itself tell you anything” (12). I see his point, and understand that beauty cannot equal truth many times because of its interpretation. I do however, feel that beauty does speak to people differently. I may find a painting of three gleaners beautiful and profound because it tells me about my family history and how far I have come. I find beauty in it because of the story I associate to it.
I also liked the idea of God designing everyone with intuition so that God wouldn’t have to constantly be speaking. This goes back to the scripture where Jesus tells us that the Helper would come as soon as he left. This ideal supports my belief that great ideas are God-given, believer or not.
“Every human subject s in touch with the ‘illuminating intellect,’ the reflection of God’s formative mental activity within our own: below the surface of human mental agency…” (23).
Williams shares that “art is an action of the intelligence and thus makes claims of about how things are” (36). I love this because my design philosophy is one where I make sure to try to stay true to the story behind every design I create. One of my favorite things about design is having the ability to be a voice to the unheard. A story teller sharing the truth about those untold stories. Williams continues to share his leading themes in visual art, all of which are full of great substance.
Creativity is intelligence having fun.