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Perfect Circle

In the iTunes Originals: R.E.M. "chats," Michael Stipe of R.E.M. talks about a theory espoused by an artist, a painter, named Paul Clay Klee as a way of explaining pure artistry. The theory goes as follows:

At the beginning, everyone starts at the bottom of a circle, which represents naïvety and innocence. As you learn, as you gain education in your trade, you move up the left side of the circle until you reach the top of the circle. At this point you're proficient - a craftsman - with a complete education. You keep going down the right side of the circle as you forget things, and return to a state of naïvety and innocence. When you come full circle, you've achieved a state of artistry.

An interesting theory, and one I've documented here for my own sake. I'll think on it more. I don't consider myself an artist at anything in particular, and calling me a craftsman is stretching it. So I don't know that I can comment on the right side of the circle. I don't know if I've ever been there.

3 Responses to "Perfect Circle"

  1. Paul Klee, actually...pronounced 'Clay.'

  2. Thanks. Didn't know it.

  3. This theory is interesting to me, however I don't agree that there is ever a perfect circle. I think that the artistry in this situation lies in the INCOMPLETE descent down the right side of the circle. But the retention of life's lessons, while important, is not what I see as the defining factor of a personality. Rather, I feel that the true artistry lies in the passing on of the acquired lessons to new and developing circles.

    Anyway, that's your input from a 17 year-old. Maybe as I climb higher on my own circle, I will be able to see more.


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