With a scientific and empirical background, I’ve never felt much pressure to be inspired artistically. Early on, I never realized the proximity between science and art because it always seemed to be taboo to mention the two together.
Ostensible, science is about rationality and about using logic combined with rigorous mathematical methods. Yet, creativity is made to seem so disconnected. Art is about emotion, about inspiring feelings, and apparently doesn’t need logic.
Yet, making logical and mathematical connections, and joining facts is not rational. Any new scientific discovery or invention is fundamentally about creativity and is essentially art. One cannot make new connections or discover anything without creativity. Although science can seem incredibly disparate from art, science is essentially applied art.
Theoretical scientists are loathe to describe themselves as ‘applied’, as if having a purpose or an application to science is a sordid concept, but the fundamentals of any science are that it needs to be applied. The very language of every science, no matter how impenetrable, is designed to ensure other scientistic can use and apply it.
This is why the most perfect science is essentially an art. The ideal scientific discovery is a connection that has never been made, nor proven, before. This is a connection, and idea, that most won’t understand. Even those that do can stare at, indefinitely, in disbelief.
Ideas are beautiful, and that is the essence of creativity, yet one of the challenges of modern art. The lines between what is art, what is creative, and what is beautiful are shifting broadly, but not in any particular direction.
As a researcher, visual art is still so much more able to inspire me creatively. My work is always about making new connections, about joining ideas, and applying new concepts to old problems. Yet, research is always so clearly described and suited to its’ purpose. A research paper tells me exactly what it intends to do, what it will do, and eventually tells me how it did it. These are necessary, but rarely inspiring. The ambiguity is intentionally written out, and for good reason.
Art builds the ambiguity in. Good science is replicable, while fine art is original. But to be inspired to scientific novelty one has to be inspired creatively.