I was speaking to a paediatric consultant earlier, and asked him whether he felt his work was art, or science, and whether he had felt this shift over time. Cognitively, we become adept at pattern matching, whilst sociologically, we learn to conform within frames, and strong at reading and understanding them. We internalise our expertise, so almost become expert, despite lacking the words to describe it. It’s somewhat like riding a bike: once you have learned, it’s remarkably hard to make yourself fall off. Your capability blinds you to the prior ignorance.
As dancers get older, they may lose strength or stamina, but often compensate with economy of movement, and a nuanced ability to deliver story through detail, not brute force alone. Even something as physical as dance is, in it’s execution, an intellectual exercise, an exercise in beauty and thought.
Science is a process, a methodology, and a mindset: art is expression, context, and freedom. Together, they give us a cumulative capability: to become expert, to become masterful.