Michel Houellebecq and Arthur Schopenhauer and the True Artist

In his pequeno pero valiente book/essay about why Schopenhauer means so much to him, Michel Houellebecq refers to the Sage of Frankfurt as concerns the true center of art and the true center of artistic intuition. The true center of art and of artistic intuition is the individual that is able to observe and to contemplate the world and the various manifestations of the world as something per se and irrespective of the gravitational pull that is exercised via the subjective will – or, as we may say today, via the ego. The true artist is someone that has kept up the ability of a genuine, naive and innocent and direct observation and contemplation, that, apart from that, „only occurs in childhood, in madness and within dreams“. Contrary to others that may primarily strive for art as a strive for money, power or self-expression or self-expression of their innate talent and desire to enter worldly systems of circulation, the genuine artist´s primary concern would not even be to create art, but to be left in his intellectual-sensual trance and his dream-like and otherworldly immersion into the world (as it gets mirrored via his mind). Such an ability, a capacity of otherworldly immersion into the world, is, more or less, innate and does not occur often. By contrast, people of this world aren´t prone to establish connections between things per se via contemplation; when they observe something, they´re eager to subordinate it to their subjective will, or, if they´re intellectuals, to subordinate it to their existing concepts. They strive for subordinating observations to their concepts like a tired man strives for a chair, and when they aren´t able to subordinate an observation to their existing concepts, they lose interest in the observation. This explains, says Houellebecq, why good art criticism is a rare as good art: because, says Schopenhauer, almost all people want something, and because of this they already want too much; the one that will truly win the victory in the end will be the (apparently) unmotivated loser that is primarily motivated in cultivating his strange and unproductive ways of thinking. Mediate about that (and never underestimate Michel Houellebecq and his capacity for genuine and unexpected insights).