Essay Example on Art as a Dangerous Tool: Uncovering the Truth Behind Human Nature

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  3
Wordcount:  654 Words
Date:  2023-09-27

Art has established as an important tool over the years. Artists are deriving relevance from the same with the possibility of expressing their ideas artistically. In some instances, it had also enabled the relaying of desired messages to one’s audience. From the novel, art identifies as a dangerous tool that can lead to the eruption of hostile characters that they want to keep concealed from the world. Such well illustrated where Dorian seems unsettled from the knowledge that Basil intends to use his portrait at an exhibit. It is from the knowledge that the specifics from the portrait could offer greater insight into who he was as a person and in the soul.

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Dorian, in real life, seemed like a pure, innocent person. The portrait, however, portrays him as a hideous person full of content and ill intentions. “Now, I don’t know what has come over you. You talk as if you had no heart, no pity in you” (Wild 97). Such had impacted who Dorian was as a person. From his interaction with the portrait, he had then developed a picture of the person whom he might be deep down. The development of the sense that the name could be a reflection of whom he was to become. It is from the thought that this was a clear idea of his true nature and a greater portion of his soul. Such actualized from the perception Basil develops once he got to look at the portrait again after some time away. The realization of how evil it portrayed Dorian that was then developing in Basil’s mind. “An exclamation of horror broke from the painter’s lips as he saw in the dim light the hideous face on the canvas grinning at him” (Wild 135). There is a record of an eruption of hatred by Dorian towards Basil because of his reaction. Such satisfying the determinations of how dangerous art can be.

It is from this situation that Dorian is overwhelmed by the developing animosity towards Basil that drives him to the will to kill. From the effect of the portrait, Dorian becomes what is portrayed of him—mercilessly stabbing Basil several times without even thinking at any point to stop and try to save his life. Despite the struggles during this ordeal, he makes certain that his victim is entirely dead. From this, Dorian then establishes that realization of him murdering his friend would result in very harsh consequences. In this case, he would also lose his life by hanging. Living up to his existing reputation, he decides to conceal any incriminating evidence against him. He was taking advantage of the idea the general public had on the whereabouts of his old friend Basil.

It is now evident that the portrayed was a real picture of who Dorian was—living up to the expectation of the perception that the public had then developed of him. He is recorded saying, “I was wrong. It has destroyed me” (Wild 136). All this is resulting from his interaction with a piece of art that showcased his evil soul. It is corrupting his mindset to the assured possibility that he would eventually develop into such a person. The elimination of any sense of guilt observed from the long sleep that he had the following night after the ordeal. The inexistence of any troubling thoughts then stating the kind of person he had developed into.


In conclusion, art possesses a very dangerous nature. It is all dependent on individuals’ interpretations of the aspects presented by it. Such is evident from the impact that the portrait of Dorian had on him and his general character. It played a significant role in the development of his evil nature—the lack of guilt and care for others.

Work Cited

Wild, Oscar. The picture of Dorian Gray. 1890.

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Essay Example on Art as a Dangerous Tool: Uncovering the Truth Behind Human Nature. (2023, Sep 27). Retrieved from

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