“I would give the greatest sunset in the world for one sight of New York’s skyline. Particularly when one can’t see the details. Just the shapes. The shapes and the thought that made them. The sky over New York and the will of man made visible. What other religion do we need? And then people tell me about pilgrimages to some dank pesthole in a jungle where they go to do homage to a crumbling temple, to a leering stone monster with a pot belly, created by some leprous savage. Is it beauty and genius they want to see? Do they seek a sense of the sublime? Let them come to New York, stand on the shore of the Hudson, look and kneel. When I see the city from my window – no, I don’t feel how small I am – but I feel that if a war came to threaten this, I would throw myself into space, over the city, and protect these buildings with my body.”
– Ayn Rand
Two points come to mind with this combination of image, quote, and video of Liza Minelli and Pavrotti singing New York, New York.
1. Pavrotti was totally caught off guard by this episode; yet, he ran with it. Liza Minelli was in top form, except once when her voice cracked. Although one could not say that Pavrotti was at his best, voice-wise, he was GREAT! In fact, this is one of my favorite of Pavrotti’s performances. My point: you don’t have to be good-technically speaking–to be a GREAT artist.
2. Secondly, I am given to question as to what there is about NYC that some people love so very much? It is her energy, her spirit, her essence, her soul. NYC is not a bland place; and it is not difficult to fully experience the city. That is why many love to be there. NYC fills emptiness and void with her energy. She herself is a magnificent artist who very capably expresses from the spirit within her.
Again, not all artists buy paint and canvas–some are not even human–they are personifications of humanity.
The closer one moves toward being his own artist within, the more that he can recognize it in numerous other people and places.
It takes one to know one, so to speak.