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The passage of time dawns upon us once more. The new year hails like a precipice of possibility — towering, white cliffs of the hope that we can grow, things can change, the world can get better.  So, we set our resolutions. Many of us dutifully, if not cheerfully, choose a goal or two that will become the harbingers of self-improvement for the days, weeks and months to come. But what shall they be?

Purple Rain, Lori Dubois

If we may be so bold as to propose a new course to plot for you, our reader — we enthusiastically suggest taking up the pursuance of art appreciation as a wonderful way to gain new perspectives on the world. To become more than just a casual bystander in the arena of visual concept and have a deeper engagement with creative art in our lives.

Art is both the purveyor and benefactor of the collective desire to think more highly, behave more boldly, act more generously and break towards the future at a prodigious gait.

So, here’s a worthy resolution: to become a collector of fine art.

Resolution is a word the means to harden one’s self in determination of achievement — to believe in the confirmation of that which hasn’t yet occurred. Resolution can also refer to the image clarity of a TV or computer monitor. What’s so fascinating about setting new goals for ourselves is how there comes with them a new clarity. A new level of determination and purpose emerges in our minds when we believe we can get to a better place.

To set your new year’s resolution on the craft of fine art appreciation and collection is to resolve to be more thoughtful and considered. Famed scientist and philosopher Albert Einstein praised the arts to the levels of science: “All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man’s life, lifting it from the sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom.”

Freedom to ennoble our own lives is our birthright. We must find it within ourselves to grasp the greatness of the opportunities at our disposal to mend the tears in the fabric of our society. These opportunities often present themselves as art exhibits, gallery openings, art auctions, benefits and fine art galas. While it may seem crass to suggest that engaging in what many perceive as a pastime of luxury for luxury’s sake as a solution for the world’s woes, consider this: nurturing an individual interest in the arts is really a unique and vital approach to self-care.

Orchestra, Alain Beraud

We wouldn’t think twice about a resolution to go to the gym or to finally stick to a new diet. Goals like these are sometimes driven by an overdeveloped sense of should. But a counter-intuitive pursuit of things that deeply interest you, such as music or fine art, then turning those pursuits into disciplines means that these resolutions can become systemic and intrinsic.

And taking up an interest in the arts is not some inwardly focused endeavor for the highly affluent and socially aloof. A life of appreciation of refined things is an investment in future generations of young people raised to be thoughtful and contemplative.

Studies have consistently shown that children and students who received the benefit of an upbringing and education accompanied by the arts outperform their less cultured peers in almost every area. The National Endowment for the Arts conducted its Survey of Public Participation in the Arts with intriguing results.

The survey revealed that adults who attended performing arts or visited museums as children were three to four times as likely to see shows or visit museums as adults. Exposure to the arts in childhood turns out to be a stronger predictor of adult arts participation than education, gender, age, or income.

And there is ample proof that diving into the deep end of the pool of the fine art world can bring exciting expansions in the way we think, feel, relate to the community around us. When we consider art appreciation as self-care, we exercise our ability to think differently and gain an uncommon altitude of spirit and vision. It’s our sincere hope that our friends and readers will consider engaging with art in 2018.

Here are a few simple steps that you can follow to start down the path of keeping your promise to fine art.

  • Discover and visit one local art gallery every month.
  • Make an art pilgrimage. Travel to a nearby large city and explore a museum or art exhibit.
  • Read a volume on the history of fine art — maybe even a biography of a great artist.

Monet’s Dream, Dennis Sabo

These are very attainable goals each of us can set and execute to be on our way to becoming true fine art appreciators, collectors and aficionados.

Wishing you a year full of art from the Emillions Art team!