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Art, as told by Yossi Ghinsberg

The man, the myth, the legend. Yossi Ghinsberg is a writer of books, a humanitarian and all round optimist.

In 1981, Yossi spent three weeks stranded in the Bolivian Amazon, a story which has been told in his book ‘Jungle’. In late 2017, Yossi’s tale of adventure, survival and determination will come to life on the big screen in the major film ‘Jungle’ with Daniel Radcliffe portraying Yossi.

Yossi has a filtered thought process which has us wanting more. We were keen to hear his perspective on art as a concept.

And so, with that, this is Art, as told by Yossi Ghinsberg.

Art is...

Art is a manifestation; it is an expression that is both original and unique. Art is a declaration of the eternal truth that is encapsulated in a fleeting moment. Art is finite, yet it allows for infinite interpretations, none of which can ever be correct.

Art is nature, and hence we can deduce that God is the greatest artist of all, and hence each one of us is not only a piece of fine art but given the qualities of our creator, we are the artist as well.

The creative worlds best-kept secret

Paul Apak Angilirq's movie - Atanarjuat, The Fast Runner, because more people should have heard of it. It was made solely by indigenous Inuit people, shows us art respects no borders and needs no institute and how art should serve and preserve a cause and community. It's as epic as Hollywood at its best; it's cinematography haunting, it's Shakespearean storytelling, it's craftsmanship as meticulous as an Akira Kurosawa classic.

The theme of the movie is dark, primal, almost biblical. Its stark beauty will play on the cords of your soul, it will uplift you, and then it will smash your heart - this movie is the definition of art.

Free expression

This balance doesn't exist. Trying to cater to someone else’s preferences is not the work of an artist but that of the artisan. An artist's integrity is measured by the unwavering commitment to inner truth and ephemeral beauty. Art is a desire that is impossible to pacify or satisfy. And that's the reason good art stands the test of trends and time. There are many great artisans these days, but few great artists for that reason.

The power of the artist

Now and always true art resonates in mysterious ways, it's truth and beauty transcend concepts. An artists' role is to be the music, not the conductor, the brush and not the hand that holds it, to be ruthless and courageous regardless of consequences, to create not replicate, to serve but not to provide services. True art humbles those it meets and alters them forever. Art to society is the heart.


Yossi Ghinsberg features in the series Samples of Society, by Hal Samples. Episodes are being produced and will be available in Summer 2017. You can catch the Pilot episode ‘Metamorphosis’  here.


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