About The Necessary

The Necessary is a meandering, lurching, scampering, spiraling, backtracking, leaping, loping journey into that part of the human psyche that makes and responds to art.

It’s called The Necessary because art is necessary. All the world’s cultures create art, and evidently have always done so. We make music together. We dance. We adorn and decorate, and fashion sacred images. We tell stories, and we act them out. We have special uses of language that we reserve for poetry. It’s safe to say that without art, we would not be fully human.

The Necessary is about love. At the heart of The Necessary is the bond between people and art. Those who write for us, or participate in our podcast, come from all walks of life. Some are professional artists or musicians or literature professors. Others are lay people who happen to be captivated by a certain artist or style. What they have in common is a story about a deep relationship with art and how it enhanced their lives. In other words, a love story. And they want to help the readers of The Necessary experience the same kind of bliss.

The Necessary is about humanity at its best. Art springs from our most positive instincts. Our drive to create, produce, and construct. Our delight in beauty, in all its manifestations. Our yearning to share that delight with others. And our urge to leave a record of our cultures and of our individual existence. One need never feel ashamed of one’s species when it is making art. In that regard, The Necessary offers a small restoration of faith.

The Necessary is about bringing people together. In both its creation and its enjoyment, art has the capacity to connect humans across time and space. Across cultures, national borders, races, religions, generations, genders, and abilities. Part of the work of The Necessary is to help remove barriers that prevent people from enjoying one another’s art. To throw open windows on art forms that may at first seem opaque or remote, or even threatening. To erase boundaries of privilege and exclusivity, to defy camps and cliques. We aim to be generous with information and inclusive in spirit.

The Necessary is about joy. We will never forget that art exists to be enjoyed. It is here to inspire us, excite us, amuse us, move us, mystify us, and generally make us feel more alive. The Necessary is created, and offered to you, in the spirit of sheer joy.


My dream is that The Necessary will attract a large enough following to enable other projects that increase the enjoyment of art, including educational outreach, arts clubs (like book clubs, only broader), collaborations, scholarships, exchange programs, commissioning of art works, support for performing groups, and events such as festivals and art shows. That is a big dream, to be sure. For now I will be happy if you follow The Necessary, spend some time with it, and come away feeling more connected to art and perhaps a little more human.


The magazine and its podcast, The Necessary Show, are made available free of charge. Down the road, if The Necessary proves valuable to enough people, readers may be asked to make a voluntary contribution to support its continued publication and its goals.


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