“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs, ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” – Dr. Howard Thurman
“Horror is the removal of masks”
(quote of the day)
Not so long ago my children received a gift from their grandfather which contained a compass, flint, emergency blanket and a U.S Army survival Manual.
I started to read the manual this weekend and would like to share 2 quotes from it with you today:
“Man is a social animal. This means we, as humans beings, enjoy the company of others. Very few people want to be alone all the time!
As you are aware, there is a distinct chance of isolation in a survival setting. This is not bad. Loneliness and boredom can bring to the surface qualities you thought only others had. The extent of your imagination and creativity may surprise you. When required to do so, you may discover some hidden talents and abilities. Most of all, you may tap into a reservoir of inner strength and fortitude yo never knew you had. Conversely, loneliness and boredom can be another source of depression. As a soldier surviving alone, or with others, you must find ways to keep your mind productively occupied. Additionally, you must develop a degree of self-sufficiency. You must have faith in your capability to ‘go it alone.'”
It would be a rare person indeed who would not get sad, at least momentarily, when faced with the privations of survival. As this sadness deepens, we label the feeling “depression”. Depression is closely linked with frustration and anger. The frustrated person becomes more and more angry as he fails to reach his goals. If the anger does not help the person to succeed, then the frustration level goes even higher. A destructive cycle between anger and frustration continues until the person becomes worn down-physically, emotionally, and mentally. When a person reaches this point, he starts to give up, and his focus shifts from “What can I do” to “There is nothing I can do.” Depression is an expression of hopeless, helpless feeling. There is nothing wrong with being sad as you temporarily think about your loved ones and remember what life is like back in ‘civilization’ or ‘the world.’ Such thoughts, in fact, can give you the desire to try harder and live one more day. On the other hand, if you allow yourself to sink into a depressed state, then it can sap all your energy and, more important, your will to survive. It is imperative that each soldier resist succumbing to depression.”
I wish you all a positive, productive and anxiety free week ahead.
Keep well and stay safe.
“I do, I undo, I redo” is one of my favorite quotes by Louise Bourgeois, because it is so relevant to my practice lately.
The same artist also said the following in a documentary about her work:
“It’s difficult to be a woman and to be like-able. This desire to be like-able…its really a pain in the neck. How are you going to be like-able and be yourself? There are doubts. I’m full of doubts”
Before my son took these photos, we had a nice chat about my work. He said he kind of like it, but it is a bit strange….(mmm coming from an eleven year old boy who likes zombies etc), but he explained that flowers coming from vaginas and images where it looks like I’m ripping my rib-cage open with a skull as head, qualifies to him as ‘weird’. He also added that he hope people will “like” my work.
I realize that to him at this stage of his life it is very important to be liked and to ‘fit’ in with his peers. How do I explain to him that as an artist I’ve grown a thick skin and that to me being liked is not as important as to do what I like?
Someone also told me some time ago that they “like” my work but will not be able to live with it in their home. Which I understand and accept, but in this day and age where everyone on social media wants a bunch of likes and for a boy dreaming about a Playstation VR headset which he hopes he can get when I sell lots and lots of work…it is not so easy to comprehend.
So I will leave you with this quote I saw on the internet recently:
is not about how many people
like your work
if your heart likes your work
if our soul likes your work
it’s about how honest
you are with yourself
- rupi kaur
For all of you in the Southern Hemisphere…I hope that you are experiencing a fine Winter and not one of ‘discontent’, because:
“We can shoot rockets into space but we can’t cure anger or discontent”. John Steinbeck – Winter of our Discontent
I am excited to inform you that the Millenium Gallery will be presenting my work at this years Turbine Art Fair (from 11 to 14 July 2019) in Johannesburg, and I will be attending!! I am looking forward and do hope to see and meet some of you there, but for those who can’t make it…feel free to contact me and I will forward a ‘digital catalog’ to you.
I recently completed a ‘vigour’ of hybrids, and they are on their way to a new home. Many thanks to the patron of the arts!
Other news: I am currently preparing for a group exhibition in August and a small solo exhibition in Spring…but more on that later. Stay warm, keep well, until next time…
I’ll leave you with another quote by Mr Steinbeck:
“A little hope, even hopeless hope, never hurt anybody.”