Sunday, December 16, 2012

Fully Involved with the Art of Other

I recently saw a film about a naturalist, Joe Hutto, who lived a year pretending to be a wild turkey (the bird). Early in the story, it became clear that the human in the story was more excited about being a turkey than about being a human. He fell completely into the art of turkey behavior, learning how to speak turkey jibberish (NOT jibberish!), to walk or run at turkey speed, to eye turkey food with intent, and even to slumber in turkey nappishness.

The fabulous secret to this man's success (for it was so great a success that he even adopted turkey fighting skills) was this naturalist's ability to lose himself into the identity of other. What art have you seen, heard, tasted, or read that pulled you into this sense of other... where you realize that the artist has not only lost him/herself completely into creating the scene, but also had the talent to take you out of yourself and into this "otherness".

Music, sculpture, visual arts, film, theater, artful food, literature. Some mediums make the transition easier than others. Which are the most difficult? Why? What do the best artists and the turkey naturalist have in common? Where do you use this behavior in your own life?