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The Jury Is In. Creative Consensus Part III: Brent Bonds

(Where do creatives weigh in? I wanted to find out, and gave some contemporaries the following question: "Mental health and creativity. How does one affect the other?" Here is Brent's take.)

Brent is an author, artist, scholar, world traveler, organizer, excavator, and perhaps, one of the nicest men I've ever met. He is a pivotal part of the Tishomingo Arts Council in northern Mississippi. He is humble and gentle and kind. Brent carries so much knowledge and experience that he could easily be boisterous or arrogant, but instead, he speaks quietly. I value his opinion, and was glad to accept the words he imparted.

Brent's self-proclaimed "knee-jerk, two cents" answer to my probing question reads as follows, "The need to create the new comes from a dissatisfaction, marginalization, or sense of no control over what already exists." I told y'all he was something.

He succinctly lumps art into two all-encompassing categories as he states, "All art is either a grasp for community or the opposite: strong statements of dissociation." He's not wrong. Art is either created for one's self or for an audience. It's looking inward or reaching outward.

Of mental health and creativity, Brent writes, "I don't think art is born of mental health issues, but that both art and mental health issues are born of unmet need for sense of community." I think he's right, and I don't think I could improve on his commentary. It's just that complex, and just that simple . . . Kind of like Brent, himself.


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