Art Matters by Neil Gaiman

Book Notes – In this series, I share my insights, ideas, and reviews of my favourite books, whose topics are wide-ranging.

Rating – 8/10
Amazon Link
Favourite Quotes
  • Fiction is the lie that tells the truth.
  • The world always seems brighter when you’ve just made something that wasn’t there before
  • Libraries are about freedom, freedom to read, freedom of ideas, freedom of communication. They are about education, about entertainment, about making safe spaces and about access to information.
  • Be bold. Be rebellious. Choose art. It matters.
Insights and Review

The book is a plea for people to use their imagination more. We need more artists and readers because people who do art and read use their imagination, and imagination can change the world.

Now the book describes these concepts much better than any paraphrasing and idea crushing that I can do. Neil Gaiman as a way of describing really  abstract ideas in a simple yet thought provoking fashion.

So I will resort to quoting my favourite parts, only elaborating if need be.

We need to devote more attention to igniting the imagination in children. We need to support libraries and librarians, and we need to show the younger generation that reading is a fun pleasurable activity.

We often are motivated to do something purely because for some monetary reason, because we want to earn more. But if our heart is not in it, if it doesn’t fire our imagination, it won’t be worth it.

Art is the best way for us to channel our creative juices. 

I want to elaborate on how I found the book’s simplicity to be its most striking feature. Often, as writers, we forget that the best writing is that which gets its ideas across with the simplest language. Neil Gaiman’s work embodies this approach.

I also want to comment on the book’s illustrations. Chris Riddell has a very interesting style, one that uses lines very well. It consists of simple shapes, and yet it catches your attention. I like that the images weren;t coloured, because that would have taken away from the depth of the topics that Gaiman talks about.

I think that this is suitable for all age groups. Rather, I encourage people from all walks of life to read this. We need more people to imagine – imagine new art, new stories, new ways of life. We need people to imagine that the world can be better than it is now.

Published by Ishan Shanavas

I am a young adult, interested in nature, photography, art and culture. An aspiring polymath, I share my learnings through my blog. I also include insights from my favourite books.

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