Spirit of Generosity

The concept of "spirit of generosity" was coined at a Ragdale Foundation strategic planning meeting. It is a state of being that many of us strive for and attempt to cultivate in our everyday lives.

 I thought about this idea again this morning when I read Aline Smithson's wonderful blog, Lens Scratch. She has, single handedly shifted the culture of the photographic community, no small feat. Her actions and generosity of spirit have fueled many friendships, connections and interest in each others work. Her post titled Thoughts on Success is well worth checking out and, if you haven't subscribed to her blog you should. She posts daily about the photographic world and the work is varied and interesting.

There is a book titled The Gift by Lewis Hyde that is a must read if you are interested in this subject of generosity and art. A New York Times article titled What is Art For, by Daniel Smith speaks about how Hyde's works have been transformative for many. "The Gift...tries to reconcile the value of doing creative work with the exigencies of a market economy" In the article the author, states...

"For centuries people have been speaking of talent and inspiration as gifts; Hyde’s basic argument was that this language must extend to the products of talent and inspiration too. Unlike a commodity, whose value begins to decline the moment it changes hands, an artwork gains in value from the act of being circulated—published, shown, written about, passed from generation to generation — from being, at its core, an offering."