Art Through Time: A Global View
Cosmology and Belief Compare: Why Do We Visualize Creation?
Why do we visualize creation?
Virtually every culture and every religion has a story that explains the beginnings of the universe, the world, or humankind. Often, these stories of creation are translated into visual form. Art helps to spread knowledge of the creation myth, sustain belief by offering a concrete picture of origination, and on occasion, breathe new life into traditional narratives.
Questions to Consider
- Both of these images represent moments in creation myths. Do you think that they are independently comprehensible or would you need text or prior knowledge to understand them? What does your answer suggest about the purpose of such images?
- What does each of these artists add to the story he illustrates? Think in terms of both form and content. How do these choices on the part of the artist impact the meaning or impact of the work?
- Consider the context in which each of these works was intended to be seen. Why do you think the subject of creation was considered relevant to each of these settings?