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The Subtle Nuance of Definition

April 13, 2015

 

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After the ravages of a course education in which my teachers declared me plain stupid, I started to question my rebellious nature  and awaken to the world through a growing passion for art. I found through the silent manipulation of material that I was able to express myself from a place of deep solitude.  And so from the age of sixteen I finally aspired to something, to be an artist and in some ways I still do. I felt that through art I had found that connection which also embodied the freedom that could lead to a fulfilling life. I was starting to feel that art was a beautiful and timeless profession, though I wasn’t aware that it could last a lifetime and be an enduring companion with which I could continue to grow as a human being.

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My respect for the sanctity of art was almost too great and because of this I was driven to extremes in order to find a credible level of satisfactionion. However this respect I had, demanded integrity and at the crossroads of fate I always tried to choose the option of truth, despite this often sacrificing my status as an artist in an aspirational society. Whenever I made the wrong decisions through conceit I paid a heavy price, as I had no excuses for my actions and because of this I learned that to satisfy my conscience I had to work with integrity and truth. The consequences of this approach have brought great hardship to my life and almost crippled me as an artist, but somehow I’ve survived and crawled my way back to the top of my game. I’ve taken the knocks and rejections for many years and held onto my dreams, but it is only now that my work is blossoming. It is a quiet blossoming that will only be witnessed by a few people and is only really visible in the virtual world. But what matters is that I have been able to realise a level of significance in my own life and because of this I can feel proud of my achievement as an aspiring artist.

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It’s just incredible how rough that road to fulfilling your youthful dreams can be and how after all the wrong turns and huge distractions that you can fight to hold on to them. These testing grounds of life eventually define us for better or worse and a some point you must stand up and exert your will if you think you have a contribution to make. Whilst I feel I must battle with myself and my awkward circumstances, I also realise that I must not lose sight of my vision and allow it to be poisoned by struggle. So while often my written words are often vehement, angry and passionate, my work remains trapped in a bubble of optimism, protected from the toxicity of struggle.

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Over the time span of my adult life, my perception and understanding of art and the role of art in society has undergone huge shifts. During which my art has evolved slowly owing to its application into the world and the consequent struggle to eek out a living, but my understanding of the role of an artist in society remains quite fixed to the kernel of an idea that I set out with. It’s been a complicated mission, almost like a unique experiment and one that could have been meaningless unless I found the energy and inspiration to resolve my artistic gestures into a greater level of profundity. By this, I really mean to continue cutting through the bullshit of the contemporary art world and its expectations, untill my approach is unhindered by the imposition of dogmatic doctrines and patronising dilutions.

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Now at 52 I can almost make sense of my life and I’m starting to feel almost accomplished as an artist in spite of my material circumstances and standing within the art world. For a long time I didn’t have the strength, courage or confidence to stand behind my own work and would look for excuses to justify my ideas and concepts. It was hard to stand and communicate the truths I felt because the environment I operated in didn’t want to be burdened with the inconvenience of truths such as mine. Though in fairness to myself that lack of courage was more to do with being blinded to my realities than a conscious decision. First I had to awaken to a higher level of consciousness to see beyond the parameters of my compromise. I needed to be broken down and have my dreams shattered in order to see my true self and so that I could discover a higher meaning to artistic expression, way beyond the vanities of youthful ambition. And I also had to develop my self-esteem  the empirical way, by proving it to myself through my work, which brings me to where I am as of the moment.

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The fruition of my recent creativity is difficult to quantify and rationalise in the moment, because I’m working on the extremities of my conceptual understanding. I don’t know what will happen next nor why it should happen, all I know is that finally I have the courage to realise my potential and be open with every aspect of my process. Now I finally understand I need to feel no shame or stigma from exploring crazy ideas or conventional ones, so I’m finally free to realise my free expressions of art. Art without the pretence of grand notions because I also realise that my life has the same value as any other life, no better or worse. So I work by challenging my  limitations and thrive on the challenge ahead as I look to continue my improvements which I hope will lead to a satisfying and meaningful life.

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❤ ❤ ❤

 

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