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Art and Culture

Updated on February 8, 2020
Geiko | Source

What is the relationship between art and culture? Culture relates to identity, many people are trying to find themselves; to give them a sense of belonging or identity - the journey within is the longest and most insightful.

Art sets the artist on an odyssey of self discovery and takes the audience along with them. The indigenous artist is inspired by their heritage and maintain their culture is interpreted through their work. Creativity is a component in the process of art and researchers have found surprising results.

Expressive dance movements
Expressive dance movements


Some people understand that culture is the appreciation of classical music, dance, paintings, good manners, fine food and wine. Others think stately buildings and language are a product of culture. Researchers found that culture evolves through socialization. Culture is a tangible facet of human groups. Researchers found that learned human behaviour along-with shared: values, beliefs, knowledge, art, law, morals and customs nurtures culture. Culture is a human tool for survival and identity, it gives meaning to life for a group. Culture is never static, if all customs are rigidly adhered to - social development of the group would stagnate.

African art

Traditional African Pattern
Traditional African Pattern | Source

Visual Art

Art means something different to everyone. The inclination to draw and create is inherent in the human species. Artist affect others through; drama, anger, passion all expressed on canvas. It is a visual narrative and the viewer should take time to understand its message. And then begins a communication between artist and a person inspired by a work of art. Art makes us more contemplative and it is a means of visual pleasure. If it is not a work of skill then it's a work of imagination. Some people don't understand a piece, but they are drawn to it without knowing why. It may be the colour or value of the art that has attracted the viewer. There is no concrete reason why it is liked, but for whatever reason an artist needs an audience.

Indigenous Art

The birth place of indigenous art is, ingrained within the spirit of the indigenous artist, it is passed on to them to preserve the culture and traditions of their society. They usually work in a cohesive collaborative group. The narratives and inspiration of the work comes from their, ancestors, oral traditions, family and other members of the family. Indigenous art, it awakens peoples consciousness and brings them closer to their origins. Comments from gallery visitors: emotive, powerful and spiritual.

Indigenous Performing Artists - JGeeks

JGeeks a talented and spirited Maori comedic act, have 'added a Maori cultural dimension' to their performance. Their goal is to take 'Maori history forward to mainstream'. They intend to jump on a waaka (canoe) to England, London, with their rangatira flag and claim England. This is cultural heritage coupled with art, and presenting it to the world.

Indigenous Maori Artist

Maintaining cultural heritage

Artists maintain their cultural heritage through art. It promotes self-esteem and identity for the artists, it also communicates a strong message to the audience of their cultural identity. It sets the artist on a journey of self-discovery, it identifies and connects the artist to society. The work cultural artists is linked to their historical origins; from one gerneration to another. Sometimes art is shunned that is not understood or frightening. However, what has been rejected in the past is now avant-garde.

Creativity; how does it work?

The advancement of societies depends on creativity. Creativity adds to the success of humans, for example, the cure of diseases, fly to the moon and advanced technology. These achievements are through the use of creativity. Creativity is everywhere and is essential to the survival of mankind.

Researchers designed test to find out which part of the brain creativity is most active in the brain. They experiment with puzzles and ask participants to solve them. Insight is fleeting and is difficult to local in the brain. The creative side of the brain is the right hemisphere, scientist are trying to pinpoint the actual flash of insight. If they can locate and understand the process then a person can become more creative. To induce insight scientists monitor the participant and ask them to complete a puzzle. And the scientist waits and attempts to capture the moment of insight. The high energy gamma rays on the monitor indicates high brain activity in the superior temporal gyrus. Insight has been located. Researcher found that you can get more insight by removing outside distractions of the world and more insight will occur. Insight is first presented with the problem your unconscious brain is also processing. Insight begins to stir -gamma waves increase and the moment of insight takes place.

What makes art valuable?

The value of a painting is not necessarily the true value of a painting. Art collectors drive up the price by bidding against each other. One important factor is authenticity or who owned the masterpiece prior to selling the piece known as provenance. One billionaire collector commented that some pieces 'resonates like nothing else'. Art collectors say that buying art is an addiction and they are looking for their next fix. The painting - White Center by Rothko sold for 72 million dollars in 2007. At that time it was most expensive painting sold. Some art is not shared and remains in private collections. They usually surface again in the art world if it is up for sale. The value of some art is only affordable for billionaires, some say that art prices are ridiculous and are not worth the amount that it was paid for. Much art is viewed as an oddity and confounds many people. But it also brings much joy, excitement and a cultural connection to an artistic piece.

Pablo Picasso


Can culture and art mix? Yes, the two are synonymous. It is evident in the performances of JGeeks. Their ancestors lived communally and shared their beliefs, knowledge, customs, rituals and so on. Their heritage was then passed down from their ancestors and is expressed culturally in this medium on stage. The creativity of JGeeks is cultural, entertaining and intelligent. The arts and culture are one in the same, and it is developed over time through personal perspectives from their origins. Creativity or insight is the initiator of art and culture and is a key component in the art process.

Artists are change agents. They have created original work; through powerful imagery.


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