Loving sculpture gardens just always came naturally to me, but this Saturday I finally understood the reason for my loving them.
I visited the Los Angeles Arboretum with 80 sculptures from local artists planted among the trees, bushes and flowers. Male peacocks, strutting their stuff as ostentatiously as possible, contributed live, kinetic art to the afternoon.
We humans have misused, abused and destroyed so much nature without even noticing. But sculptures inserted among nature weds the beauty of nature and the beauty of human-made creativity. For a brief time (the sculptures will be taken down and returned to their makers), human creativity and nature's creativity not only co-exist but enhance one another. Briefly, they belong wedded together.
The variety of what nature and these artists are capable of producing shows the kinship that creativity and nature have — that we humans are part of nature deep within our core. Nature's cleverness in the turn of a leaf, the budding of a flower, the colors it is capable of producing is connected to the human thoughts, feelings, anger, love, beauty, poignancy, happiness and sadness of the artists' creations.
I have had the joyous experience of knowing some creative people. I watched the mostly joy and sometimes anguish when they used their talents to create. I lived for awhile with a musical missionary in Taiwan and experienced how music was a daily part of living with her. You couldn't separate her and her life from music.
Another musician friend told me she was once asked in an interview why she decided to become a musician. She said she didn't become a musician. She was a musician and knew it from an early age.
How both excited and at peace I felt wandering through the arboretum, soaking it in as deeply as I could. It made me very glad to still be alive.