Art Spirit - Robert Henri (1865-1929)
A serendipitous moment in a public library
led me to discover one of the best art instructors I have ever had.
While browsing through the art section I glanced at the bottom shelf
where I saw a small blue-covered book entitled The Art Spirit.
Those were the days when one could see the due dates of previous
readers of each book. Checking the date due page I saw that this
one had not been checked out for twenty years!
At that point, I had never heard of the artist
and teacher Robert Henri but the book seemed promising. Since then
it has become my favorite book and one that I can pick up, open
to any page and be reminded of why art is so important in our lives.
I have since seen Henri's work in many large museums all over the
world. One can recognize his portraits at a glance for they embody
his ideal of "the art spirit."
This is a book not only for the artist but
for anyone who appreciates art and its value in our lives. More
importantly, it is a book that encompasses the philosophy of living
life to its fullest. I am always discovering words of encouragement,
which continually help me to persevere in making art.
"There are moments in our
lives, there are moments in a day, when we seem to see beyond the
usual. Such are the moments of our greatest happiness. Such are
the moments of our greatest wisdom. If one could but recall his
vision by some sort of sign. It was in this hope that the arts were
invented. Sign-posts on the way to what may be. Sign-posts toward
- Robert Henri