“Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.”
Albert Einstein supposedly once said the quote above. I think something similar holds true for science and art.
Science without Art is Bleak,
Art without Science is Terrifying.
Science without Art is Bleak
Science surrounds us, but yet, few scientific findings make an impact. It’s just too complex, too number-heavy, too boring. But there are exceptions. Just think about Astronomy. Why would anyone care? Well, they did when someone put Astronomy in relation to their lives. Carl Sagan’s “Pale Blue Dot” is certainly not a scientific text, but it is artistic and puts things into perspective. Or take the images that are distributed: They are incredibly beautiful. Some you could put up as artwork and people do.
Thing is — without art science is bleak and uninteresting. Images, illustrations, well-written easily understandable texts makes science come alive.
Art without Science is Terrifying
If you look online, there are a lot of interesting artworks. Some spread as memes. Given their artistic power they might even change minds. But this does not mean that they are true — and many are not. Yet they elicit the imagination and trust of masses. There’s a word for this: propaganda. Unfortunately, many people are very good artists, but terrible when it comes to critical or skeptical thinking.
I strongly argue that creativity needs organization, and likewise, art needs science. Art can be too powerful to sway minds, it should move them in the right direction.
And yes, “right direction” is a dangerous term. After all, there is no “right” in science — just a less wrong. Science is a continuous, socially driven and controlled endeavor. And science can be wrong, spectacularly in some cases. And “thinking the issue through from different points of view” is not really conductive to art.
But I think at least a little bit of both is needed — art and science — to make a positive impact.