Lauren Prince

NBC News

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Does art imitate life, or does life imitate art?

Is art an imitation of life, or is life an imitation of art? We have seen how art can be borrowed from nature and how is can capture the emotions of the human experience. But what about those instances where there opposite may be true, where art may preced live events?

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    May 24 2011: If we think of art as a way of expressing ourselves in paintings, literature, music, sculpture, etc... - it's no doubt that art imitates life, imitates our minds and the way we treat our existance.
    But there is another very interesting feature of art - predicting. There are many cases when writers in their books predicted the technical future of mankind, described devices that came into uor life only after many decades. But this is only the new ways of familiar things, the ability of people think in term.
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      May 25 2011: That is a fabulous interpretation!
    • May 26 2011: Agree, science fiction books set the bases for my technological developments, however I believe that those predictions are their interpretation of their surroundings and existing ideas at that time. Imagination still has its basis on interpreting existing ideas,things etc. with a twist. Ones imagination cannot fully evolve without the surroundings.
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    May 12 2011: I think the answer is that it happens both ways. Art can imitate real life. A writer or a visual artist is deeply moved by something and works to make a representation of it sifted through his own soul.
    Then there are the people who imitate or take on the style of photographs, movies, models, vampires, gothic heroes, etc. In that case I think life then imitates art. People with shaky identiies even take on the personas of stars.
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    May 16 2011: Well, I drew a picture of myself not paying taxes and I'm still paying taxes.

    Life does not imitate art..
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      May 25 2011: maybe if your drawing was better you could sell it and not pay your taxes?
  • May 15 2011: I think art does imitate life and vice versa but I would not use the word "imitate". Think of science fiction books and some of the futuristic ideas expressed in those books. The ideas do not imitate per say life but they do make use of general knowledge and how things work on a daily basis as well as the laws of physics. In turn reality makes use of science fiction ideas as a challenge upon which very cool technology advancements happen.
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    May 12 2011: "Art is Bigger Than Life" is a well accepted verse , I feel opposite is also true , I mean Life is Bigger Than Ar some other times.
  • May 12 2011: Well, what was created first? Life or art? I believe art imitates life because without life there would be no art. You could argue, though, that presently pop culture has shaped the present.
    • May 12 2011: I almost said the same thing, but Debra made a good point about how we could say "life imitates art" in a way.
  • May 12 2011: Art imitates life. Art is a mixture of our creativity, perception, and experience poured out into words, music, or however we choose to express ourselves!
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    May 11 2011: The artist might create a walking rock, but a walking rock does not create the artist . . . or does it? Now I'm really befuddled.