The Artistry of Living


In the profound landscape of existential contemplation, D.T. Suzuki invites us to reconsider the very essence of life through a lens that transcends the mundane and ordinary. His poignant words, “I am an artist at living – my work of art is my life,” beckon us to explore the profound interplay between life and artistry, weaving a narrative that transcends the boundaries of daily existence.

Suzuki’s declaration positions life as a canvas—an expansive, ever-unfolding tapestry upon which the strokes of our experiences, choices, and emotions create a masterpiece. In embracing life as art, we step into the role of both artist and spectator, co-creating the intricate patterns that give depth and meaning to our existence. The canvas of existence becomes a sacred space where the brushstrokes of our moments paint a story uniquely ours.

To be an artist at living is to approach each day with an awareness akin to a painter standing before a blank canvas. It is an invitation to infuse intentionality into every action, to recognize the beauty in the ordinary, and to weave the threads of joy, love, and purpose into the fabric of our days. Life, in this perspective, becomes an ongoing masterpiece—a dynamic, ever-evolving expression of our innermost essence.

Suzuki’s wisdom encourages a shift from passive participation in life to conscious creation. The artistry of living lies not in the pursuit of a predetermined outcome but in the deliberate engagement with the present moment. Every choice, every thought, and every emotion becomes a brushstroke, contributing to the unfolding composition of our existence. It is a call to embrace the responsibility and privilege of being both artist and artwork.

Artistry thrives in imperfection, and life, as Suzuki suggests, is no exception. The canvas of existence bears the marks of both light and shadow, joy and sorrow. Embracing the imperfections is an integral aspect of the artistry of living. It is through the interplay of contrasts that the richness and depth of our masterpiece emerge. The flaws become unique brushstrokes, adding character and authenticity to the overall composition.

The parallel between life and art extends to the idea of a creative process. Just as an artist experiments with colors, textures, and forms, the artistry of living involves a continuous exploration of self-expression and self-discovery. Each day becomes a new palette, inviting us to blend the hues of our experiences into a mosaic of personal evolution. Life, as a creative process, encourages us to remain open to the infinite possibilities that each moment unfolds.

To be an artist at living necessitates mindful awareness—an attentiveness to the subtleties and nuances of our experiences. Suzuki’s wisdom encourages us to approach life with the same mindfulness that an artist brings to their craft. It involves savoring the textures of joy, acknowledging the shades of sorrow, and appreciating the symphony of emotions that color our days. Mindful living transforms the mundane into the extraordinary, revealing the hidden beauty within the ordinary.

As Suzuki declares his life as a work of art, he implies that the legacy we leave is not confined to external accomplishments but is deeply embedded in the quality of our lived experiences. The impact of a life well-lived extends beyond the tangible achievements; it echoes in the vibrancy of relationships, the authenticity of self-expression, and the beauty discovered in the simple moments. The legacy of a lived art is etched into the collective memory of those touched by its radiance.

In the spirit of D.T. Suzuki’s profound insight, let us embrace the canvas of existence with the heart of an artist. May we approach each day with a sense of creative intentionality, recognizing that life itself is the grand masterpiece we have the privilege and responsibility to craft. As we navigate the artistry of living, may the brushstrokes of our moments create a symphony of beauty, and may our existence resonate as a testament to the profound interconnectedness between life and art.

By Christina Nikolovski,,  Contributor of //LIVE SIMPLY//