Friday, November 05, 2010

The Creative Artist: Loss Sensitive and Separation Prone

The psychoanalyst Gilbert Rose, who writes about creativity, notes that loss is often at the root of the creative process, perhaps less because the nature of the loss than because of the similarity of the artist to the sensitive child.  He wonders why, since loss is "inevitable" in life, so many artists are preoccupied by it.  He answers the question by reflecting on the kind of disposition an artist might start out with: "A creatively endowed child could well experience early loss more intensely than an average child. . . .  The more intense sensuous engagement with  the world might make for both deeper and wider rootedness of attachments."  In a sense, the ups and downs of early development might be different, since "For a creatively gifted child, the very process of individuation might be experienced as a loss -- a narcissistic loss to the child's idealized sense . . . of omnipotence," for by definition the creative artist may start out "loss sensitive and separation prone."

Perhaps my own loss sensitivity is reflected in the following three blog posts:

An idea that I have is based on the notion proposed by Anthony Storr that the act of creation itself is comparable to childbirth.  The artist "births" his creative productions as the expectant mother births a child.  Perhaps the very act of creation -- the process by which an artist transforms psychic ideas into an independent reality in the form of the artistic production -- is experienced by the artist as a loss.  In a sense, the artist may experience a kind of "post-partum" depression when his creation is completed.

No comments: