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The dichotomous life of Arty Phucker

November 6, 2014


Sometimes my head is so full of ideas and thoughts that I find myself almost drowning amongst them quite lost, and they are often too broad to condense into a reasonably manageable format. It’s not so much about great depth but more the possibilities of a healthy enquiring mind and finding ways of expressing the ideas which might put them to rest. It’s particularly notable with my growing collection of equestrian drawings, all ideas for sculptures, yet I cannot produce them for practical and ideological reasons. I know I’ve brought this upon myself and it’s perhaps a good problem, I chose to expand my approach in order to realise my possibilities, what I didn’t realise was the sheer size of our latent potential, with a quantity of ideas that can go beyond reasonable practicality. Previously I had grown used to realising my ideas through what can only be described as a concise restrictive practice, where I held everything within my mind, but now my expansion has been so dynamic that it simply goes beyond my capacity to recall ideas from my growing  archive of sketches. I wonder if I will ever make sense of it all and find a simplistic solution, or if the expansion will continue and leave me in a daze. It’s a complex issue for me and maybe it’s just that I can’t let go, a kind of controlling issue that imprisons me and  holds me back. My impulse tells me to keep forging ahead because I have a long way to go to realise a more substantial level of artistry but my rational mind says consolidate and select. But as always art is full of contradiction and on every level it involves an intense dialogue within that eventually leads somewhere, between a state of confusion and a state of inspiration.


The constant challenge of creativity leads to an empirical wisdom for the practicing artist and it’s an intriguing phenomenon, I feel it delivers an insight beyond the theoretical academic wisdom that you gain from weighty tombs, because it is authentic and for real. For me there are no short cuts to attaining such practical wisdom, even though in modern society we almost arrogantly expect so much to be at our fingertips, and through google we suddenly know it all at the touch of a command key. But great depths are earned through commitment and dedication and in a world that celebrates style over substance, the depth of substance that I have to offer has no place. I can’t fully explain what I go through to make art that I feel is real and authentic, but it is almost through a torturous commitment and belief in something fundamental to us all, however in my own time it falls on deaf ears and blinkered eyes. However my issue is, that I believe so deeply in the who and the what and the why of my existence that I cannot compromise my integrity for pretence and bullshit, I cannot compromise or dilute or subvert my work and ideas into convenience because it would become worthless in the values that I whole heartedly believe in. This is the tough decision that I’m constantly aware of as I exist in the margins facing  the obscurity that is the fate for many others such as myself.


Of late I can feel my sense of urgency and desperation reducing following my recent struggles,  I have identified many of the issues that troubled me and found a way to deal with them. Through my work I was able to realise the changes that were imperative to my well-being and by fast tracking a huge developmental leap I feel back on track. In the right place which reflects thirty years of endeavour with sufficiently accomplished work, both conceptually and aesthetically. Even though my work has far exceeded my expectations I still felt that I was falling behind. That was my instinct and how I felt deep within and untill I could satisfy those impulsive reactions I knew that I would have to make a super human effort. Now slowly but surely my life has changed, but making those changes it’s almost like self indoctrination, particularly when the changes involve redirecting the hard wiring that has partly driven my artistic direction. As I write I slowly shuffle forward and as I scribble, my lines reach out slowly developing into the areas I feel comfortable with. And with that life long slow growth in confidence, I get ever closer to a maturity and a belief that empowers me to work with greater freedom. Finally I’m becoming free from the debris that has been thrown at me, confusing my direction, as I have learned to deal with traumatic adversary and finally got to grips with the realities of human and societal coexistence. We are not alone and yet we are alone, so we must take full responsibility for our actions, because we can’t hide from ourselves. So as I choose to worry less about how others perceive me, I gain a level of freedom that is vital to me and which is enabling me to work with an interrupted determination. Empathy held me at the whim of others through deeply held feelings but the treatment I have received pushed me away, far enough to force me into a re-evaluation of human behaviour and finally I learned not to make judgements from my own perspective. Instead through observation I was able to see the differing motivations that drive people into certain methods of behaviour, which comes back to the duplicity of how we want to be perceived and who we really are.


My realisation of such duplicity being present in us all, also helped me to unlock the self deceit that held my own work back from evolving to the full, because I realised that I unwittingly compromised my own work both consciously and subconsciously, because I sought popularity and felt a need for acknowledgement and recognition. Now I realise that with maturity there can be wisdom and that lifes lessons can teach us much if we acknowledge them and move forward being mindful of them all. Insecurity and self-doubt are all part of the human condition and I have found that I have had to slowly and tentatively work through these issues, because that suited my nature, I could have battled them with arrogance and conceit at a much earlier stage but this approach was not a part of my nature. Now I stand alone in solitude because I finally have the strength to work and create without any need for the input of others, because I realise that what I have to say comes solely from me, it is my story and my thoughts that define my art. What I have done, is to turn the tables (both metaphorically and actually) on those who empower themselves through the judgement of others, and I’ve done this by standing up behind my work, in full belief of who I am. I’m no longer a victim for my sins of being an artist, but a man who is proud to have developed greatly through a life defined by a commitment to truth and respect for art. It really is that simple, but I have battled for the last four years for this day, where finally I feel accomplished as an artist with  a renewed self-belief. It has taken thousands of drawings and many thousands of words to rescue me from the disillusion I felt, the levels of stress and lack of sleep have even affected my health a bit. But it’s been worth it because I couldn’t rest when I realised I was sacrificing the possibilities of my art  as I slowly faded away under lifes pressures. My world had closed in on me and I had become locked into a restricted world that felt like a prison, it doesn’t matter that it was all my fault , but it does matter that I allowed my circumstances to crush my spirit and restrict my practice as an artist. But today as I sketched and looked back through some of my sketches I realised I had made the next step and could look with an objectivity that confirmed my transition. At this stage you stand up tall and say bring it on. 🙂


Bye for now beautiful people ❤ ❤ ❤


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