Why art?

Girl Before a Mirror

Ever since I was 18 years old, and I uttered the words “What if I study art, or art history?” I have listened to so many people telling me “You won’t be able to make any money out of it” , or “That’s more a hobby than a career”, and the one that has bothered me the most: “Are you planning to get married and never working a day in your life?”

I went -stupidly- with that current of thought and ended up studying medicine. (Only smart people study medicine, imagine how big my ego was while studying it.) And even though it’s an amazing career, I have never been completely happy with it.


I like treating with people, with human emotion, I like the feeling you get when you help someone. But it does not make me feel like I’m using my abilities to their fullest.

Van Gogh's Starry Night has always made me feel at peace.
Van Gogh’s Starry Night has always made me feel at peace.

Even though medicine has given me so many things, I still lack the emotion to practice it. Ironically, that emotion is the one that I feel every time I see a painting, every time I listen to music, every time I glimpse at images of sculptures like Michelangelo’s David. And that’s just by glimpsing images, I can’t even describe what I feel when I see them. I want to learn everything I can from them, I want to read about them, I want to translate my story into the canvas, to grasp a bit of what the artist was feeling while creating that piece.


Art, and the historical context in which it was created have always been my passion. Lately I have been thinking that the reason why I enjoyed so much the social and humanitarian area of medicine was because of my sensibility to human emotion. If a piece of art created out of human emotion transmits so much to me, then the actual human emotion is ten times bigger.


I’m not intending to loose my medical background, instead I want to increase my knowledge, I want to increase my human experience. So, the next time someone asks me “Why do you want so badly to go into art?” I’ll just answer: “To become a better human being.”

Picasso's Guernica is such an emotional portrait of Spain's civil war.
Picasso’s Guernica is such an emotional portrait of Spain’s civil war.