Sri Aurobindo on Art & Literature

Sri Aurobindo on Poetry and Art

Art and Nature 

There is no incompatibility between the inspiration from within and the dependence on Nature. The essence of the inspiration always comes from within but the forms of expression are based on Nature though developed and modified by the selective or interpretative sight of the artist.  

– 6 September, 1933. 

A painter can certainly bring home the aspects of the sea and the beauty of Nature, but he does it as an artist, in the way of Art. He does it by representation and suggestion, not by mere reproduction of the object. The question of Art or Nature being more beautiful therefore does not arise.  

– 16 March, 1936 

Art cannot give what Nature gives; it gives something else. 

– 20 June, 1934 

Art for Art’s sake certainly; Art as a perfect form and discovery of Beauty; but also Art for the soul’s sake, the spirit’s sake and the expression of all that the soul, the spirit wants to seize through the medium of beauty. In that self-expression there are grades and hierarchies — widenings and steps that lead to the summits. And not only to enlarge Art towards the widest wideness but to ascend with it to the heights that climb towards the Highest is and must be part both of our aesthetic and our spiritual endeavour. 

– 17 April, 1933 

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