Therapy or Meaning

This past Friday, I spent the night collaborating on an art project with a buddy of mine, something we’ve been promising ourselves we’d do for rhe past several weeks. We thought it’d be fun, seeing as his mediums of choice are sculpting, wire, and jewelry making, and mine are pointism, charcoal, and monoprint work. unfortunately, we didn’t get far. We got lost in conversation on an artistic delima of his:
During the past year, his art has become something therapeutic. I asked what was wrong with this, for isn’t art supposed to have therapeutic elements for the artist? Rather, aren’t the first versions of pieces, the first drafts of poems or the first outlines of paintings, supposed to be raw in emotion to at least a certain extent before the create goes back and softens or sharpens the image?
I’m asking genuinely because he didn’t seem to have an answer, and I’m wondering if he felt that art sold have some sort of message rather than pure emotion. Or rather, if the message o the task away of a piece is more vauable than the emotion or thought from which it came? I’m not sure that I know even my thoughts on this.
I can say that when it comes to poetry, I do sit down to second and third drafts with the question of, “why should the reader care?” Or “Why do I feel the need to tell the reader about x, y, and z.” But second draft still feels as though it is built on the foundation of the first, the one which, for me, is emotion or thoughts or memory thrown down on the page in words that are coherent to me. Does that then make the emotion more important, if I’m only spending the next few drafts polishing the poem and making it coherent to the reader?
I don’t know. I’m just thinking out loud.

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