Consciousness always has an objective, something to which there is a focus known as conscious thought. Consider both animals and humans because both have the power to think. To think means there is a sense of aboutness present, self awareness. The name given to this by philosophers and scientist is intentionality; known as the “the hall mark of consciousness.” Defining what consciousness is no easy labor. Intimate things hold a juxtaposition as they have no inherent power of intentionality because they are never about anything because they simply exist.
We all have ideas about what consciousness is and how to define it. We may not think of it unless it becomes a topic for discussion. So, what is consciousness exactly? What does thinking feel like? It’s awareness___ The awareness of ourselves with in a space is inclusive of that sense of space (what is around us.) Sensing the space around us gives us placement within ourselves and outside of ourselves. Therefore we have both mental and physical boundaries. When it comes to thinking however we go beyond our physical bodies so we can senses both. Regarding art we seek to recreate that space, and give the sense of self awareness to the viewer as if he or see where “us” in the moment.
This sense includes the aura that surrounds the body, about 3 feet out from our physical bodies. I think consciousness is not confined to our physical bodies. Not when we can send intentionality forth for the sake of others, especially those we feel a connection to. Prayers, wishing people well, being aware of the consciousness of others___. It simple is hard to define when it becomes a personal measure.
The synonyms we can use to replace the word consciousness are as follows, awareness, wakefulness, alertness, responsiveness, sentience, realization, cognizance, mindfulness, perception, apprehension and recognition of (something). More to my point this one! “Consciousness emerges from the operations of the brain.”
The mind as I understand it, gives the orders for the body to take action. The brain is where the mind exists.
Consciousness is also said to be “sentience or awareness of internal or external existence.” Consciousness is still a mystery even after many years of study by philosophers and scientist. I think this is why we make our own personal conclusions. It’s the problem of how the mind works; truly fascinating thing, the mind because of it does.
The questions of “why we do what we do?” come to mind. I have been fascinated by why we do what we do for years! What do we know about ourselves and others? Quite a lot! Humans have goals, a motives, and purpose. What is true of ourselves is pretty much the same with other human beings, a lot of it is similar for animals. We sense, believe in, adopt ideas and personalize them. This too involves our consciousness being. Consciousness being unique to each person. In today’s world many people are into learning about who they are and how we are connected to one another. One main commonality is love and wanting to be loved and accepted for who we are. We long for love to be a part of our consciousness and the consciousness of others. We grow uncomfortable when we become entangled in the opposites that create doubt and uncertainty. Self talk and emotions either buoy up consciousness or break it down.
Now, what is the role of consciousness in art? Artist certainly use consciousness as a part of their creative process. We strive to express what happens and what we think.
I write as well as create art and feel consciousness is a part of both my writing and art. I am quite aware of that I bring into my art or writing. I constantly am asking questions about what is important to me or the world around me. My focus at this time is how to help the world and people in it by using Shibui Found Image Art. It is always an original art form, but it can heal as an art therapy and create revenue streams. I just need to prove how it can do these things and get it out there as an idea others can take a hold of and run with it. What Shibui requires of me is different than other work I have done in a number of ways because of its process. Writing is perhaps is easier to define. Art feels more complex. Both involves purpose, and intentionality.
Shibui is about creating an art form that keeps people in their pleasure center longer. It works as it is identifying shapes that become something like finding something in the clouds. It is using imagination which involves consciousness. It involves what is remembered. It does not seem to take people into darker patterns of thought by calling upon emotions. It seems to act like a mixed message.
Shibui is not like setting up a still life and it does not have a selective objective. I recall being in a class during my degree program where the objective was to create masks that would symbolically protect us from what caused us pain. This form of art is different form Shibui though it does involves the imagination. The difference is the problem solving aspect of Shibui Found Image Art. Essentially it is a puzzle to be solved by the rules of the creative process that are created by the mind of its creators. This is conscious awareness. The creating of a mask to protect myself made me think and feel the feelings. What I used for materials were things that symbolically gave power to protect. The choices came from what I might use symbolically. I could find certain things to represent power. Color, I used feathers from birds of prey. The design had to show power. Doing this kept me in a different frame of mind. Not in my pleasure center. It involved what cause me those hurtful feelings. A mask meant to protect? I still had those feelings to wrestle with and the mask was a reminder. Some art forms are created, then destroyed symbolically. My argument is to change up the source of those feelings so we can think less about them and more about happy, good feelings that make people feel the can do “it! I am ok! I got this! I feel successful with this! If I can do this I can do other things!”
For me my consciousness makes me think of an octopus with many legs wiggle out, reaching and feeling the world and the people in it who come into my range of sensing. Such awareness tells me identifiable and likely things about the world and others. Such sensitivity is from keen self awareness, and knowing ones body, having taken time to be present with it. The body will respond, “I tingle” when I am on target. I trust my consciousness. When I create I am sensing my conscious awareness. I know that a figure needs a head, arms and legs, A flower needs stems, petals and stamen. Both have things about them that make them unique. Even trees and plants have consciousness to do all they do! If they did not they would not create seeds to reproduce, not unlike we humans. The whole world is consciousness, we are a part of a greater whole. What we think and do affects everything.
My interest in the role consciousness has a great deal to do with healing, the mind and the creative process of Shibui Found Image Art. It all begins with seeing light.
When creating we draw upon what we know, “this is” what we draw upon from our personal filing cabinet the mind. Consider that what we have filed away is considered useful, and the best information at the time something was experienced. But at that time not all we file away is the best, we also file what is not just the best! How is this? Because when we take it what is not the best information, that is how we know what the best is! Having consciousness sorts things out. Therefore it becomes balance. The next leap is that when we create art we use what we experience which is inclusive of consciousness and both what is best and what is not best. It is true of writing. The interest often is in the end; what it means to be human. We compare and study ourselves to animals because they kinda act like us. Some believe we evolved from animals. We have concluded they too use their consciousness.
What role does the mind consciousness have regarding healing? It includes consciousness because it is a part of thinking. The mind translates consciousness thought into what heals. We all have what is called the pleasure center in our brains. The pleasure center is a big part of the healing process. The longer we stick with what makes us feel good, we can replace those things that make us not feel so good. Essentially a mixed message so we don’t go “there!” If the mind can focus on something creative, it is not likely to go so deep into what grabs on to it, and takes us “there.” The brain rattles around things in short term memory until it goes into long term memory. And then there we are! We can call things up in a flash! When we call things up in a flash! We not only think of what ever it is, but we feel it as our bodies remember when “it” happened. We may not think it does but it does! The mind uses experiences.
A lot of things come into play when we create. We are constantly in a state of consciousness; it is conclusive that consciousness is simply feedback from our nervous systems. What miraculous being we are! I marvel at the movie “What the Bleep We Do Not know.” In the movie you get an idea of how the body responds to the mind.
Why think about such things as consciousness? What has consciousness to do with being an artist or writer? It has everything to do with being both! We can “paint” with mediums, and we can “paint” with words. A kind of yin and yang where consciousness is the balance. Knowing both sides of what is yin and what is yang means there is balance. There is a balance between writing and art.
The role an artist plays is a very important role. We wear many hats. We facilitate for the sake of others at times. If the piece of art we have created helps to generate a response from a viewer it works! That response has to do with consciousness as well. There are times where a response comes from somewhere deep withing someone, because it has been triggered. The eye sees, the brain responds and then the body responds, and there we are caught up in the consciousness of thought.
Pejj Nunes 3/20/2021