On the Origin of Art

As some of our readers know, I am lecturer at HKU University of the Arts, Music & Technology. The reason I continue combining this work with the demanding job of managing Grimm Audio is first of all that I feel responsible to pass on knowledge in the field of audio. But also there is few things as inspiring as young artistic people. Last year there was a great example with master student Wilko Schmidt-Dannert whom I supervised. The thesis he wrote offers deep insight and marvelous views on what drives people to make art. Recently, he turned his thesis into an essay that is very much worth spreading. So I love to share it with you.

In his essay Wilko shows that the basic processes of Darwinian evolution have remarkable similarity with the basic processes of creating and consuming art. Their common driving force is the pursuit of quality, as defined by Robert Pirsig in his book Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. Eventually Wilko’s research leads to a multidimensional compass for artists, that builds on the Story Cycle compass of scenarist Dan Harmon. To see someone combining Harmon, Darwin and Pirsig into a big ‘theory of art’ is one of those irresistible reasons to keep teaching…

Eelco Grimm