Sunday, March 12, 2006

Gallery Sunday

Objectivist art historian Lee Sandstead is in town, and I tagged along as he went to the Corcoran Gallery in DC to photograph one of sculptor Daniel Chester French's awe-inspiring statues.

I find experiencing works of art such as French's eminently rewarding. Works such as this one serve as powerful testimony that exquisite love is possible—and within our reach. When standing before the white marble, one witnesses the fruit of the hundreds of artistic decisions and the thousands upon thousands of hammer and chisel strokes necessary to create such a masterpiece. When contemplating the message the artist seeks to communicate, one cannot help but stop and think to one’s self, "oh, such glories that belong to man."

And what does a work of art like that have to do with the philosophy behind capitalism? Everything. If you could convince an opponent that the ultimate outcome of individual freedom and egoistic passion is a moment of sublime, unencumbered love (an expression that is blasphemy to far too many in our world today), I think it would be a lot easier for our civilization to answer the struggles it faces—and once and for all move past them.

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