RECLAIMING THE BODY AS HOME:
THE BODYBASED ARTS AS CENTER OF THE ‘NEW VILLAGE'

by Nala Walla

 

THE TYRANNY OF THE TALENTED (or, Practice Makes Perfect)

“The artist is not a special sort of person, but each person is a special sort of artist.” - A.K. Coomaraswamy

When we gather to participate in the live, improvisational arts, we do not expect that there will be “experts” or “virtuosos” to do the dancing or the acting for us. Each of us acknowledges the wealth of material that naturally exists inside of us, and seeks simply to uncover it, consistently dissolving the internal Critic and Censor implanted in us by a society overly-focused on control. Each of us takes the responsibility for experiencing art for ourselves, recognizing the notion that art is only for the “talented” as a lie. Art is a practice and a learned skill, not a mysterious gift given only to a precious few. And, like any skill, the more we practice, the better we become at doing it.

We recognize that if the community is to benefit, we cannot continue to hand over our intuitive sense of health and how to heal, of right and wrong, of aesthetics and innovation—in short, we cannot continue to hand over our power to “the experts.” We must trust ourselves to act now, individually and in community, on our own behalves. This is end of the age of the expert, and the beginning of the age of the intuitive and the cooperative.

top | table of contents