Chandler Branch's Blog

Something to be thankful for...

“Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art. . . . It has no survival value;
rather it is one of those things that gives value to survival.” — C. S. Lewis

I'm not sure how this statement first came to my attention, but it has certainly stuck with me. As someone who has spent his professional life advocating for art of one sort or another, I'll admit it's easy to make the mistake of pitting the value of art against the ever-pressing, survival-oriented concerns that otherwise define human existence. That it's an unequal pairing is obvious enough. If you were stranded on a desert island, would you rather be gifted with an endless supply of food and water or [insert your favorite work of art here]? But Lewis' statement provides valuable perspective on the role of art in giving meaning to existence.

Big White Gloves, Big Four Wheels. 2008 painted bronze by Jim Dine. City Garden, St. Louis.Big White Gloves, Big Four Wheels. 2008 painted bronze by Jim Dine. City Garden, St. Louis.What's easy to forget is that someone has to actually invest something in order for art to exist at all--and all the more for art to develop to the point that it's capable of elevating our thoughts to new heights. I give thanks for those who are laboring to develop the gift of art in the community I call home. Life in St. Louis is richer and more meaningful because of the work of so many artists, arts institutions and patrons. A recent stroll through City Garden offered me ample evidence of that. It's a joy for me to be here and have opprtunity to influence the process.

Art Saint Louis │ 1223 Pine Street │ St. Louis, MO │ 63103 │ p: 314-241-4810 │          

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