Art has always been a way for humans to communicate with one another. Overcoming language barriers, art has been used to communicate ideas, stories and significant events.
In the last three years the world has seen more turmoil than ever. Artists across the world, both on the street and in their studios, have taken pivotal events and captured them on paper, on canvas and on walls; from the murder of George Floyd, a global pandemic, to the invasion of Ukraine.
Art has crossed language barriers, countries and time zones to show people what is happening across the globe.
And while this art is both activism and expressionism, there is a comfort that can be found in it. A physical manifestation of the frustration and anger you may feel. Acknowledgement you are not alone in your anxiety, stress and mixed emotions. An amplification of voices.
Running parallel to this art there is a different, equally important type of art being created. A quieter art.
Art created as a sanctuary, an escape from the every day.
Art that is thought provoking or provokes a smile.
Art that draws you in and connects on a personal level.
Art that makes you question what inspired it or how the artist knew to add that specific detail.
Over the years I have had many people come into the gallery and comment that it is "their treat for the week", or an "escape" from whatever is stressing them. A sanctuary of sorts. Some have apologised for not being able to afford works but commented the gallery is their favourite place to escape.
Before opening Quirky Fox, I worked in libraries and knew the power of escapism but I didn't know what a privilege it was to create a place others found peace in. That whatever was happening in their life, they felt they could let go of their worries for just a moment and escape into a piece of art.
It feels as though that role of art, in any form from painting through to movies, as a form of escapism or sanctuary is more important than ever. Taking a moment away to experience something other than the stresses weighing you down.
Since the 1700s art has been used in therapy (although more formally recognised post war). Art has always had the power to take people away from their worries for just a short moment whether through its creation or consumption.
Enjoy that frivolous novel, the superhero action movie or eye-catching piece of art.
Creating your own art, or delve in to a hobby that bring you comfort.
Don't be afraid to go into an art gallery online or in person not just to buy but to escape.
Escape into what gives you comfort and allow your mind to rest for a just a few moments before putting up your shields again.
Main Image: ‘The Night Owl’ by Jane Crisp
Secondary Image: Racism is a Virus by Zabou