My relationship with the art process is one of consistent self discovery. Its an exciting aspect of the practice that always results in an evolving. The spirit show is the current result of this evolution, which is the result of its two other areas that it preceded, which was 'Self' and 'Culture'. The process has been the same, though its evolved in its own way as well. This process has been one of just over 10 years where I had taken my life and expressed it. It began with self, which had me doing a large number of Self Portraiture from a mirror while I was in Art School. Simultaneously I was writing in a journal towards the beginning of understanding my psyche. Of who I was. My thoughts and feelings of who I was. The cultivation of insight. This work was very personal in the way that it was solely about my experience, yet it was the foundation that would extend towards an exploration of social empathy, attempting to express the heart of the cultural, the American, the Western experience that I exist in with a society of some known, but more unknown individuals. This was the cultural exploration that had me working at all types of jobs, meeting all types of people in whatever social situations provided itself. Life was fun, for it was always a research of sorts that I could take both the pain and the pleasure back to the studio and express it into art for all. The ends of the cultural exploration led to the boundlessness, beyond the walls the limitations that I had experienced within culture, if there is a boundlessness. This is nature, or spirit. By nature, I mean the nature of things... that is the fundamental truth of what they are in the essence of their experience. Culture was oriented in the material, the appearance of things. I came to realize, this material is how we exist, relate, communicate. Everything is seen as separate. But is it all really? The spirit is the exploration of a possible 'oneness'. An interdependence among all things. All things working in accordance with everything else as a whole, expressing a stream of natural harmony despite the chaos that is visible to the eye. I will save the details of my discoveries for a future blog, exposing more and more thru reflections and artworks mirroring these discoveries. Yet, I am experiencing this oneness first hand. It does exist, it is the nature of reality. For this upcoming show, I have called on various individuals having their own relationship with Spiritual awareness, practice, and/or cultivation. Most, but not all are artists. To me, that does not matter. I'm interested in the content of the individual, not of 'what' they are in that they can make a pretty painting or what not. Its been my experience to meet many artists, and continue to do so that lack this content that I am personally interested in. The art reflects this and the truth is in the conversation where there is little substance other than name dropping, self absorption, practical words of upcoming shows and projects, and so forth. I want to have a conversation with the person that feels the life given to them. Deeply, and is fearless about expressing it whether thru a piece of art or a simple conversation. This awareness of how one is living is an element of spirituality I feel. And more so, the courage to celebrate it openly, unashamedly. Furthermore, to devote ones life to it full heartedly. We find ourselves caught in lives of obligation to many things and forget the fundamental miracle afforded us all. Our birthright. Their is a missing link in how we live and who we are. That link is spiritual awareness, and its my hope that any words I write, say, or any art that I create will inspire any to discover the missing part(s) to their own wholeness, living the most complete experience possible. Living in peace, the truest freedom, loving and accepting ones self and becoming a walking expression of this love giving nourishment and fruit to the world with each step taken. Making the world a better place beginning for one's self, and by default benefiting others with this radiating light.
This show is fun. Everyday is something new. Im empty and open to it, being filled. It would be easy to arrive at a place of stress with the deadlines and all that I have to get done as curator and artist, having other projects hanging over me all at the same time. But I've existed in that way for too long and the conclusion what is the point to exist in such a way? Why miss out on the middles because I'm only concerned with the results of finishing. This show is about the heart. The metaphysical heart of passion, of intuition. So this weekend, one of the artists in the show, Michelangelo came by with a friend.The friend Sergio, is from Spain and though I thought they knew each other for a decent while, I was told it had been less than a week. Sergio brought a book that he had recently created in five months time, which was a beauty showcasing a world of imagined creatures in imagined environments and biology that he poured out. There were writings accompanying the images, and I would describe it as an artistic book of science and biology that was colorful, fun, and sexy. I was inspired by his passion and the results of finished labor that he exuberated. Even when he wrote his contact information for me, he did so colorfully. The three of us found ourselves at the Emerald Tablet, where my studio is as well as the Spirit Show will be exhibited. We gathered around a piano, where Sergio was playing Chopin like numbers while MIchelangelo and I talked. I got the idea to ask him ,"what is spirituality?", with the music in the background, and both he and Sergio nodded with excitement when I wished to record it. What followed is an excerpt in the video on this blog. It was a beautiful moment captured, unforced. Life had created the expression, and I simply mirrored it. Im trying to work with all art creation in this way. It is a leap, especially with deadlines which can kill the risk taking element, but what is their ultimately to lose? What is really threatened. All we can really do is try.... but i'm finding the way to be trying without trying. Letting go and allowing. The harmony resulting in a creation of art in this way is indescribable at best, but I will say it is bliss. Thus I'm seeing it as the way towards creation. Towards living. The next day Chessin, another artist in the show came by the studio. We haven't seen each other in a good while, so it was great to keep up. Mentioning earlier the lack of content that I experience in others, she is anything but. Our conversation had her sharing her recent life experiences of diving into life and all its mystery and rising to the surface with all she learned. She is fearless in this way and I feel the commadery in sharing the same practice. Of using this life given to us to better understand ourselves and this world we live in. Focusing on this spiritual aspect, life has become a magnet with the development of new relationships and situations that offer the seeds of further spiritual understanding. There is an element to this life that may not be able to be explained, but works in a certain as what I'm describing. The new age era uses catch phrases such as 'like attracts like', ' laws of attraction', etc. The truth is revealed in the experience always, and Im arriving at these truths. I wish the same to all.
"Homage to the Tao", is a current finished painting that pays homage to the The Tao Te Ching and its author Lao Tzu. I have done a few other pieces paying the same homage, and the reason I continue to do so is that I've come to find its knowledge as a continuing source of spiritual knowledge. That knowledge of the indescribable aspect of that missing link of ourselves and the world we live in. The Tao is, excuse the phrase, but a guide to living in this manner. A superior guide that opens one up to one's self and the possibilities of the worlds realities in its mystery and uncertainty. For the spirit show, I have began building an installation to accompany the painting, intensifying the expression of the Tao's homage. More to come in process picks of the complete work, as well as further description of why the Tao.