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#85614 - 10/18/12 05:44 PM Poets/Artist and Their Vices

Advocate of Wordz Administrator Offline
Founder of HipHopPoetry[dot]com

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 1203
Loc: The Bronx, NYC
History is filled with great writers and artist who had/have dependencies on vices (drugs, alcohol, etc). Some artist have associated the two so much so to the point where one does not exist without the other. It is, always has been and may always will be a plague within our community.

How did and why does this happen? Is the artist's perception of the world driving them to these things? Or does chemically altering your mind drive you to art?

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#85723 - 10/20/12 10:06 PM Re: Poets/Artist and Their Vices [Re: Advocate of Wordz]

.Succinct. Offline

Registered: 11/07/08
Posts: 404
Loc: San Diego, CA
It hink when we write... there is a serene sense of utopia created... It's like... we might start off high or drunk or whatever but the words... they don't fade off like the high does... So in order to keep getting that sustenance we keep coming back... The alcohol... makes it easier to accept... just how deep our rabbit holes go.

#85947 - 10/26/12 10:39 PM Re: Poets/Artist and Their Vices [Re: .Succinct.]

Scorpiana X Offline

Registered: 11/24/08
Posts: 241
Loc: Cali via Bronx
I think by nature artistic types are self-destructive. I think we artists think differently, more intense, our creativity leads us to think deeper than most, and our destructive habits help numb us to the things we see in our heads. Couple that with the fact that many of us have gone through abuse, traumatic childhoods, dysfunctional families.

#86083 - 10/30/12 10:33 PM Re: Poets/Artist and Their Vices [Re: Scorpiana X]

tre g. Offline

Registered: 11/17/08
Posts: 496
Loc: somewhere on planet earth
Piggybacking off of Scorpiana X: I would agree that most artist have troubled backgrounds and the rehashing of those tragedies are often the topics and tales we present to our audiences and that can be painful to deal with! My sister doesn't write anymore because of the pain, despite how gifted she is. Another way to look at this question is from the spiritual aspect of it! Alcohol has spirits and may other drugs are also methods to reduce the addict to a medium through a spirit might travel, may be why we call it getting "high" as in closer to the heavens! I know some people who can't even draw a straight line without a drink in their system! There's a term in the hip hop community that if you have to smoke weed before you can write a rhyme than your rhyme is ghost written! I believe both points have much to do with why addiction is so common in artist but I believe the latter is just symptom of a greater addiction! Fame!


#86216 - 11/04/12 12:30 AM Re: Poets/Artist and Their Vices [Re: tre g.]

Siulan Offline

Registered: 11/07/08
Posts: 1087
Loc: College Park, MD
I can't speak for everyone but ... I think that a lot of creative expression is a coping mechanism for things we don't necessarily know how to deal with otherwise - and because the product of the troubling thing is a positive thing usually, and it seems like the deeper the pain the more effective the artwork becomes - maybe people who are really trying to take some emotions out of themselves by putting them in art aren't looking for applause. And because there can be a lot of positive feedback from other people to something we consider so painful to ourselves, it's not an effective coping mechanism, and needs to be supplemented by something else - which may be where drugs/alcohol/destructive behaviors come into play. I think writing (or other art) can be a way of figuratively or literally extracting some emotion or thought and putting it somewhere else. And when you distance it from yourself it can be easier to deal with, you can look at is a tangible thing instead of something just clouding over your head and being oppressive without substance. I think it's this drive to escape from something or be in a different state of mind, the need to alter your thought process or your feelings, that can lead to destructive behavior. In an extreme way of looking at it maybe it's a kind of self-exorcism where you are trying to re-locate or expel something from your own mind that you cannot or will not deal with, or don't know how to understand or explain in anyone else's terms.
'Stare. It's the way to educate your eyes. Pry, listen, eavesdrop. Die knowing something. You are not here long.' -Walker Evans


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