Solitude and Creativity
A continuing dialog with Massimo Priviero
Today, we are talking about solitude and creativity. We usually tend to think that if we are alone we are also unhappy. We build an identity tailored to be shown on social media to get more “likes,” and virtual friends are ostentatious as trophies even if not in reality. Perhaps never as today, the feeling of loneliness is a widespread and suffered condition.
“Without great solitude, no serious work is possible.” (Pablo Picasso)
The concept of “strong and sought-after loneliness” – says Massimo Priviero – belongs to me a lot, this is what I was as a boy, this is what I am today, thirty years later. Then, solitude is the natural necessity of a man who writes, who composes, of a musician as of a carpenter. Sharing happens when you communicate by showing others what you’ve done, hoping that they will appreciate it and that it will give them emotion. That’s when you divide your need for loneliness and the value it can have for you.
Very often loneliness is more a state of mind than an objective reality. We are alone because we feel alone. Because we do not feel understood. Perhaps because we have also lost the ability to establish real relationships with others because we do not believe in ourselves enough and we are afraid of being judged negatively. Learning to spend time alone with ourselves, learning to listen to us, gives us a way to bring out what are our desires and our needs.
Dealing with our weaknesses also helps us to accept it and believe more in our potential. Learning to be alone with ourselves is the way to get to know us and accept us so that we can establish a healthy relationship with others.
Solitude and Creativity
In solitude, we are able to rework events better and we better evaluate what happens to us. if we are able to stay well alone we are less subject to the pressure of the group, less conditioned by the judgment and expectations of others. If in a group we tend adapting our ideas and our behaviors to those around us, with the risk of not giving space to our real thoughts, when we are alone we are more focused on our ideas.
Loneliness is essential to any form of art and, although we must not think that an artist is a person who rejects the world, and even if it may seem a contradiction, art is the highest form of sharing. The artist creates to share, the ultimate goal of art is sharing with others what has been created.
“The essential point that you must take into account — says Massimo —is that you go through two needs that are apparently opposed and impossible to be reconciled from a psychological point of view: need for extreme creative solitude and need for extreme sharing with the world. In this synthesis and in this quest for balance passes everything that happens along a life path of this kind. Believe me, if I tell you that this search is often not easy at all.“
We ask Massimo Priviero some questions.
Massimo, we are in the era of social media, where we do everything for one more like, we are surrounded by virtual friends and we have never been so alone. Learning to enjoy our solitude would not also be useful to better manage the relationship with others?
You give the answer! It is clear that a correct relationship with one’s neighbor is the result of a positive relationship with one’s self. But it’s not easy, especially these days. “Enjoying” our loneliness also means not giving us discounts and in some way really look in the mirror and discover things you do not want to see. And this can also be scary so maybe it’s easier to take refuge in the virtual which is more comfortable, simple, even if it’s a bit cowardly compared to life. The real one obviously.
Feeling alone and being alone are often two different things. The solitude sought is pleasant, much less the one endured. You often spoke about a sought-after loneliness. Do you ever feel the risk that this will lead you to isolate yourself too much from those around you? Do you ever really get lonely?
Of course, the risk is very great. You can end up considering yourself the measure of all things. You may not see your neighbor. And maybe not even give anything to those who really look for you and are close to you. But as far as I am concerned I confess that “feeling lonely”is something that has always concerned me little.
If instead, you base the idea of “feeling alone” with that of not being able to communicate with a certain kind of world, of feeling distant from many logics, forget that they are positive or negative, then that is a feeling that I often have.
But we all look for balance points between what we feel we are, and sometimes we really are, and what we have around us. And often it is not an easy task. But in general, I think, about this topic, of being a lucky man. I find many good reasons to be quite at peace and to communicate with my loneliness.
Every creative process requires you to be alone. Art is a selfish master that wants to be the only interest of those who decide to devote themselves to it. Except that it reciprocates with great satisfaction, rewards you and satisfies you. Do you think that having dedicated yourself to your art has taken something away from you? Is there anything in your life that you had to give up to devote yourself to music? Is there anything you wouldn’t sacrifice on your way back?
Clear that there is also a price you pay. However, “artist” is a term that I consider great and deserves to be used with great attention, we have to take awareness of what we call “artist” place that in today’s time this appellative is also given to a young boy from television broadcast, that obviously has nothing to do with terms like that. An artist sacrifices to his passion to a part of what might have been and which, instead, he will never be again.
But it’s not a planned choice. Let’s say that there is almost a moment of no return when you decide that in life you cannot be anything else. With consequent joys and sorrows. Then, any intelligent person looking at his life and his past would change many things and others would do better.
The phrase that best identifies an idiot is “I would redo in my life everything I have done”. There’s no sentence more stupid, dumber, and arrogant than that. So, as far as I’m concerned, of course going back, I would also do a lot of things other than what I did.
Above all, I would try to better reconcile the need for solitude that we spoke of with the value and importance of loving and understanding better those who are really close to you.
To be adult is to be alone. (Jean Rostand)
Do you agree with the above sentence? If so, why?
Yes! I totally agree. Maybe because really dealing with yourself is a craft that you learn on the street. That’s when you find out you’re alone. Who knows, maybe the next question you ask yourself at that point is whether you’re a man or just a twist of fate.
About Massimo Priviero
A thirty-year career as a musician, a great attention to the lyrics and messages contained in his songs, a book written looking at the sea, an introspective work that examines his life and in which everyone can easily recognize themselves.