Without the artist there is nothing. There is no stage, no play, no audience. No lights, no script, no lines to remember for actors that don’t exist. There is no box office. No tickets sold, no posters on the window, no leaflets, no programmes, no social media advertising. No applause, no wine sold at the theatre bar. Outside, on the street, there is no bookshops, no shelves, no readings, no place to browse fiction titles, no Non Fiction books, no Sci/Fi, no Crime Thrillers, no Romance. The windows are bare. The counters are unattended, the tills are quiet, unplugged and unnecessary. People don’t read on the bus because there is nothing to read so they listen to music. But there are no bands, no songs, no song writers, no guitar players, bass players, drummers or vocalists. There is no band art, no genre, no classical, no rock, no dance, no psychedelic, no trance, no country blues, no homegrown singer/song writers recording the modern soul. As the passengers look out the window they don’t see any churches because there are no designers, nobody to imagine a steeple. No church, no mosque, no synagogue, no buddhist temple. There is no bible, no Torah, no Koran because nobody has had the ability to understand the teachings, the ethos, the importance of being able to record it artistically, attractively, with an eye to the divine. There is no divine. There is no stained glass windows. There is no Mona Lisa, no Sistine Chapel, no IL Duomo. No Ulysses. No Count of Monte of Cristo. No Brother’s Karamazov. No Godfather, no Goodfellas. There are no phones, because there were never any computers. There were never any computers because nobody was able to imagine the future. It takes an artist to bend the rules of perceived reality and force the impossible into existence. To drag human understanding to the next step. To know that there is another door to open, another level to reach, a place we don’t know about – but only the artist truly believes it is there. Without the artist, the cars are poorly designed. There are no papers in the shops. There are no museums, no libraries. No cinemas. No poetry. No sculptures. No exhibitions, no launches. There are no podcasts, no blogs, no kindle. No Apps. No philosophy, no thinking. There is only silence, infinite and grey, and the human without art is a biological machine for which there is no meaning. No understanding. No purpose. The artist is the pulse of the soul. The cartilage of civilisation. Without the artist, there are no publishing houses. No editors. No book designers. No interns. No marketing department. The printing presses lie idle and redundant. Pristine and unused in a cold austere warehouse. An occasional bored click or twinge of a rusting screw.