Should Laws Govern the Arts in a Society?
Throughout history societies around the globe have employed art as a means of beautification, communication and unification of the group. Art is expressed in various ways, including woodwork, stone carvings, paintings and glass works. Of course, this is barely the tip of the iceberg as to the styles of art that have touched the world.
The rules and means by which an artist may express their creative spirit are sometimes strictly outlined by the legal system within a society. Many believe that this hinders the creative process and more than a few have gone against the law and created their works as desired. In some cases, these artists are viewed in retrospect as heroes and with disdain. This virtually always depends upon how the society continued to evolve in the decades and centuries following the death of the creator.
As a modern example, graffiti is considered illegal across the United States and people get in trouble for it on a regular basis. While some of these folks are gang members, the vast majority are artists who use the walls and other flat vertical surfaces in their community as canvases. When caught, these men and women are usually given fines and some type of community service. The person may have to clean or repaint to cover their art and might even be jailed if enough instances occur.
While those who own the buildings and others perceive this as an act of vandalism, many of the creators do not. There are members of society who find it distasteful to drive past these creations while others critique the art itself. Many pieces of graffiti are quite complex and reflect either a learned or innate knowledge of how to employ color, shadow and other elements of art into the work in order to create something meaningful.
While you likely have an opinion on this modern example, what about scenarios from the past or ones that may potentially arise in the future? In fact, there are other areas of art that have been governed in this country and some that still are today. Have you thought about any of these matters? Even if you believe that it does not relevant in your life, if you live in this society, it does.
Every year, libraries and readers across the nation celebrate “National Banned Book Week” which brings attention to books that were once banned in our society. Today, a large number of these are considered classics and the authors literary geniuses. Even though the country has become considerably more open-minded as a whole to freedom in this type of art, there is still censure on materials.
As long as there are people on the planet, there will be art. It is an integral part of the human experience and helps to form and express the society in which it is created. The types of expression and variations on restrictions are likely to continue to change, as it has been since the first pieces of art were created.