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Finding New ways to express myself

April 14, 2014

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Slowly but surely a new set of ideas for sculpture are evolving through my drawing, they are an addition to my ongoing development of equestrian sculpture but  relate to them strongly. I am a relatively poor artist, so I will only be able to develop a few ideas as far as sculpture, something which I’ve grown used to, after a lifetime of battling compromise in a struggle to make ends meet. Though now I can develop my ideas in the sketch book and by sharing all my drawings I hope to sow seeds in the minds of others about the possibilities of sculpture, I also like people just to see my art because art is made to be seen and to communicate. Though my life has been a struggle I can’t help but feel that all my experience has led to a substantial artistic offering, a rather unique and original approach which in the end has become carefree and very open, in terms of my intent. Though the work itself is not carefree, because I put all I have into it and take it extremely seriously, after all I’ve dedicated my entire life to artistic expression and would like it to be of a  substantial meaning to me.  The lessons where always there to be taken from my experiences, but it took me a long time to have the confidence to stand up and speak openly about  life as an artist and the dreadful art world that we artists inhabit.

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The art world has in short, radicalized me into a man who is truly anti-establishment and I feel with good cause and well-reasoned arguments, these contrary opinions  have evolved over years of  my virtual silence. A silence in which I observed and held on to all the information like sculptors do, to a point where all the information joins together to produces a very interesting overview that has altered my perception and shattered the illusion I had of the art world. Admitting this to myself was difficult, I always knew that there were deep flaws but didn’t have the strength to live without the goals the art world offered. But eventually after my best efforts were ignored over and over again, I had no choice but to introduce a more brutal honesty, an honesty that tore down a lot of  what I took for granted and in doing this I realised my whole perception of reality in terms of the art world was based on false notions and that art as a truth may in fact be from a different place. Now I don’t look at art as a commodity, in fact far from it, I see art as a stand alone expression of human creativity, made from an impulse to express from the depths of being. In short I see art that is made for a market or to fit in with current trends or, constructed with art world reference as a dilution imposed against the free will of creativity. A conditioning of the artist to conform and produce society specific art to satisfy the institutions and the market. It may sound quite radical in some ways but my thinking is a profound reaction to an art market fuelled by the greed of the market economy, the mass consumption and false notions of art as investment to hype up and accelerate the production of art into a frenzy. But art made purely with an aim of selling, is made with the notion and intent of commodity and when you are honest with yourself and I mean truly honest, you know what your intentions are as an artist. I often deface my own work now to remind myself what my art is about and whilst I have no issues with work that is very desirable, I need to know that the force that drives me has a level of creative purity. So I don’t make art for: people to like me, to become famous, to become rich, to fit neatly into the art world, for people to like the work or even to inflate my ego. No instead I try to make art that I feel is: honest, true to my creative impulse, meaningful to my life, innovative, interesting and free so that when I close my eyes and go to sleep I smile because I know who I am and I can believe in myself.

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I know that applying this new approach is almost impossible and it would be naive to be governed by a conclusion of the moment, because it would impose restrictions, however I am already applying the notion that the work I make is an independent creative act, to ensure that there is a truth that underpins the integrity of my art. In some ways it’s a small shift for me because I’ve  always been an outsider, but what it has done is to broaden my approach to art and I’m no longer governed by the insidious pressures that once weighed so heavily upon me. By articulating these thoughts I’ve finally been able to set myself free and proudly stand up for who and what I am, I couldn’t have written this a year ago because of fear of judgement, a fear instilled in me by a society that expects people to conform and accept the status quo. There is a price to pay in terms of the diminishing financial rewards, but that is a small price to pay for the priceless gift  of creative joy and a bit of wisdom.

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