Movements are powerful things.
They galvanize people and get them moving in a uniform direction with a shared purpose.
Movements can be transformative. Or as we have seen with a lot of political movements, they can be destructive and downright deadly.
So, why would you want to build a movement around your art?
It’s how you spread your particular kind of art to others around you that care about it and can help it spread.
I was watching a riot being depicted on a TV screen a few days ago. There was a fire, smoke, people running on the streets, vandalism, the works.
The scene that struck me in particular was when a group of people, maybe 6 or 8, went over to a car that happened to be sitting idly by, and they began showing with all their might, and in what seemed like a fraction of a second, they had overturned the car and let it come crashing down on the other side.
We all know cars are heavy things. You wouldn’t have much chance of lifting one up by yourself, let alone flipping it altogether.
But it turns out when the group of people combine like that, some truly inconceivable things become a piece of cake.
In fact, when your movement is powerful enough, you are likely to suffer from the too-small-ideas syndrome.
How frequently has this occurred in the political arena? A political movement, not realizing their trans-formative power and potential, settled on destroying the economic fortunes of another class, not realizing they could build a bigger and better pie for everyone in the country.
A mega corporation, not realizing the potential of a fledgling technology and the movement around it, passed up on the opportunity to invest in what would become the biggest technological movement in the world.
Now, if you are an artist of any kind, a writer, musician, comedian, actor, what-have-you, it’s really up to you to create the kind of movement that your art fits with.
Building a movement is a bit like tending to a tree. You can let it grow organically most of the time, but you have to be there to do things like plant the seed, water the little tree, and prune the growing tree, and clear away debris, things like that.
As you build your movement, you art will begin to do things that you never thought it could. That, my friends, is the power of the movement.