Is Art a Luxury?

8 Mar

Let’s talk about this term, luxury, first.

Most of us, if we want something badly enough, can find a way to get it. Living on the Edge by Steve Henderson

A luxury is something that you don’t really need, and by that definition, lots of things fall into this category.

We need shelter; we need protection from the elements; we need food; we need water; we need air.

That being said, the shelter could be a hovel, and as long as it keeps us warm and dry, then anything more is a luxury.

Food? What we need is enough to sustain life — rice and beans should do the trick, but most of us prefer to go beyond that. Technically, the steak, potatoes and spinach salad, along with the chocolate pie for dessert, that you ate last week is a major, major luxury.

Do you see where I’m going here?

Anything that goes beyond what we truly need to sustain life can be defined as a luxury.

You need a car to get to work; fine. It doesn’t have to be a Cadillac, but if it makes you happy when it is, and if you can afford it, why not?

You need a phone to do your job; it doesn’t have to be cute and small and smarter than you are, but if it makes you happy when it is, and you can afford it, why not?

You need clothes because you don’t live in a nudist colony; they don’t have to be form fitting and flattering, but if it makes you happy when it is, and you can afford it, why not?

You want something on your wall that makes you smile and feel happy every time you look at it. That’s a painting. You don’t eat it, wear it, or live inside it, so it’s technically a luxury, but if it makes you happy and you can afford it, why not?

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