Tuesday, May 26, 2009

True Confessions


Another one?

In early '02 I returned from an all too brief stint as a visiting
artist in Thailand. Confession time. I realized I was stuck in a
rut. I didn't have half of the passion of the Thai artists I met.
Somewhere between getting my MFA back in '78, moving
to NYC for ten years, having a child and building a paying career
independent of art, my rut was a comfortable groove.
I wasn't uncomfortable.

Perhaps that isn't the best description for a art-working mode
but I'm more productive and the work is a bit edgier when I'm
operating out of my comfort zone. Whether it's wrestling with
a new topic/subject or needing to use a new and different media
to express; my artistic growth seemed strongest at that uncertain
confluence of "I don't know" and "I'm uncomfortable".
I mention all this because I started over in a sense. I had images
and ideas that I wanted to explore with new media; altered
photographs, animation, video. I found a source of inspiration
and knowledge almost in my own backyard. I began taking a few
graduate courses at Wesleyan University. Lo and behold over
the last seven years I accumulated enough credits to earn a
second masters.
The process made me refocus on my art in a
way I hadn't felt in years; and I relearned the joy of confronting
uncertainty. So while a second masters is extremely redundant
I just may have used those new building blocks to make a
staircase to the top of the rut. At least I'm not making piles of
dirt and calling it art anymore ;)
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