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Leo Tolstoy said that the purpose of art is to directly transmit an experience from one person to another. "Art is a human activity consisting in this, that one man consciously ... hands on to others feelings he has lived through, and that other people are infected by these feelings and also experience them.

The chief peculiarity of this feeling is that the receiver of a true artistic impression is so united to the artist that he feels as if the work were his own and not someone else’s — as if what it expresses were just what he had long been wishing to express."

Viewing such a work of art unites the viewer with not only the artist, but with every other viewer of that work as well. This is why art is not just an adjunct to human experience, but a vital necessity of life and society.

--From the Introduction to "Contiguous", Triton Museum of Art