Can art create vehicles of change?

I was walking with a friend of mine this morning. She has ventured into the world of photography with both feet and her whole heart. I admire that. We were chatting about the statement of: Do you go out with a fixed intent of creating a particular image? Stated bluntly, do you have something in mind when you click the shutter? Do you, as the artist/creator/visionary of the piece, have a focus and do you know what it is? It doesn’t matter what kind of “art” you create, it poses the interesting question of INTENT. As she is growing as a creator, which hopefully we all are in our own ways, she is comfortable not knowing what she wants to photograph yet (?) and goes out and tries all sorts of things. Bravo for experimentation. Bravo for creative growth.

As a creator of anything, how important is the piece/the image/the product? Is there a message? A hidden messages? What are the thoughts you as the creator had/have and what might the spectators views be? What becomes of the piece?  I was back from my walk and was listening to the below TED talk. The title-Can art amend history? caught my attention. I thought it was an impressive 12 mins. and I have placed it below for you. I hope you find it as interesting as I did.

I have pulled this quote out of the talk: You can switch out the words “paintings” or “sculptures” for just about anything you may be working on or thinking about. “I want to make paintings, I want to make sculptures that are honest, that wrestle with the struggles of our past but speak to the diversity and the advances of our present. And we can’t do that by taking an eraser and getting rid of stuff. That’s just not going to work.”

As a new year rolls in the topics of change, unspoken truths, shifting focus in whatever ways/means rings true to you seems like the perfect time to post this idea and/or question of- Just what is your intent?

ABOUT THE SPEAKER:  Titus Kaphar · Artist

Titus Kaphar’s artworks interact with the history of art by appropriating its styles and mediums.

( https://ted.com/talks/titus_kaphar_can_art_amend_history?utm_source=tedcomshare&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=tedspread–a )

You also may want to check out –https://www.postmastersproject.com – looks pretty interesting too!

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Is your ear to the door?

If you listen carefully, you may be lucky and hear the cracks of the next door opening. Of course, you must be looking for the openings, the threads of light; the tiniest crack may be the one that opens and floods your world with light. Here’s to hope.

Birdelini at an open door and in a holiday designer skirt
Break open the doors

As we close in on 2017 and with the dawn of 2018 is seems appropriate to think about what you are looking for, hoping for, working for, trying to manifest (whatever the words are that work for you) in the new dawn. I know I am looking down all the alleys, walkways, doorways and passages. We will see what I can find. Stay tuned. I would love to hear what you may be looking for behind your closed doors? ♥

It’s also the Winter solstice, so we can all jump for joy, the days are getting LONGER and BRIGHTER. Let’s take it as metaphor and have high personal hopes for a more brilliant 2018.

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Why Change can be tempting-or not.

The seasons are changing-our world is changing.

It’s hard for me not to feel a bit powerless in the grand scheme of things these days. Indeed, the weather is beyond our control. The hurricanes/tornados have caused much destruction, and it will be a long time for those places to return to their ‘normal.’ Politics are creating havoc worldwide. There we may have a little bit of power-if we collectively speak out things can happen and we can make a difference. Grassroots has resurfaced with a vengeance (thank goodness), and many people are working very hard.  Thanks to every one of them.

Fall is a time for clear intentionsThere are always personal changes that affect our days. Some are good and remind us of the kindness of strangers, and some are less so. We lose people whether it be to death, changes in our relationships or just shifts in our realities. These can be painful. We also get to add people, and that is a bonus, new people help to broaden our exposures and experiences. At times we change our minds, or those around us do-all require flexibility to bend, turn, ebb and flow. Little changes can add up and equal an enormous shift. Life can change on a dime, and we often don’t know what’s to come. The most active resource we regularly have is our own strength and the personal choice to keep on going. We have to believe in ourselves and that we can do ‘it’ (whatever ‘it’ may be.)

Fall is full of intentions-Fall clean ups, crisp air to breath, the stifling summer heat is all but gone (but so is what we frivolously call the carefree days of summer.)  We just passed the fall equinox and solstice, where day and night were equal.  Thursday night marks the closest full moon to the fall equinox.

Harvest Moon
Harvest Moon

According to National Geographic-“In the Northern Hemisphere, the harvest moon is the closest full moon to the fall equinox, which usually happens on or around September 22. That means the harvest moon usually occurs in September. But this year, the September full moon appeared on the 6th, separating it from the fall equinox by 16 days. The October 5 full moon arrives only 13 days after the fall equinox, making it the closer pairing…Over the course of a year, the moon pops above the horizon about 50 minutes later each day, on average.

But for several days in a row around the fall equinox, the moon rises only about 30 minutes later in the northern U.S. and just 10 to 20 minutes later in much of Canada and Europe. It sounds like a small shift, but it brings noticeably brighter nights: During this time, the full moon rises almost as soon as the sun sets, first appearing as a plump, orange-colored orb right around dusk.” http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2017/10/when-is-harvest-moon-october-space-science/

I repeat – During this time, the full moon rises almost as soon as the sun sets. In today’s world it feels like very little is equal.  All the more reason to keep looking forward, try to shine,  and believe in the power of yourself.

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reality/illusions…truths/facts/fiction and mysteries of life.

Let it go - Let it beDrawings, photos, artwork and imagery, words, politics, fake news, real news, family matters, eclipses – it’s all part of an ever changing bombastic world which feels pretty out of balance these days. This unevenness-this unbalance-has brought me back continually to the thoughts of a few articles I have recently read and enjoyed. The basic premise is-“Let it be” and/or “Just be”….

And so that’s the topic of this post.

“We need to learn how to let go because trying to hold onto anything is like trying to nail jello to a wall: Nothing sticks, nothing stays. When David Chadwick asked Suzuki Roshi** to express the heart of Buddhism in just a few words, Roshi replied “Everything changes.” … We can’t hold onto a world that’s constantly changing and transforming—we can’t make the world stop being the world….”

To hold on is to cling, to ask questions (which is just often just another mode of clinging- masked as searching) as we look for the answers is NOT an act of “let it be”… the goal is to be INDEPENDENT, not DEPENDENT in our worlds, our loves, and our lives. If we are independent, we can let ourselves, and the ones we love “just be” whom ever they are. A young child craves and clings to their parent, but as they grow they gain independence and they return with love and joy (hopefully.) “Affection, love, care, and concern are the very essence of enlightened life.”  Those words can be for pretty much anything we encounter in our modern world. We cling all too often to what we suppose it all to be, what we hope it all to be…maybe it’s our jobs, our goals, our families, our expectations, our friendships, our relationships, our possessions-you get the idea….If we “let it go” and step back a bit, accept it as comes our way, breath in and breath deep, we allow ourselves and others to “just be”-to accept it/them as it/they are. After all, in reality, much of the time we can’t really do much to change it. If we can learn to flow with it, even if it has pain and suffering, and try not to fight it, then maybe, if we are lucky, we can learn to “just be” with it. To let it unfold. To let life takes its natural course. By the way, this doesn’t mean we give up, or that we lose all control, or that we stop making our best efforts to improve ourselves and our circumstances-it just means we understand that sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t. Failure is only not to keep trying.

“To let something be requires much more strength than just letting go, because we’re learning to sit with the ambiguity that life often creates from those moments that we could never have conceived of…..

It’s a choice to let a situation remain unresolved, let the loose ends dangle, and allow the options to remain. Letting it be means giving up deadlines, timelines, and ultimatums—because life doesn’t figure itself out when we want it to, but rather when it’s meant to.

And until that moment happens, we can laugh, smile, grow, and experience life, all the while knowing that we didn’t let go of something that wasn’t meant to be let go of. We simply made the choice to sit with the situation as is, without trying to control the outcome.

Time may not heal all wounds, but it does have a way of clearing even the murkiest of waters—if we just let it be.”

Ideas and quotes draw from the articles of: https://www.elephantjournal.com/2011/07/letting-go-what-it-means-how-to-do-it/

and

https://www.elephantjournal.com/2017/07/fck-letting-it-go-instead-just-let-it-be/

** David Chadwick (born 1945) grew up in Texas and moved to California to study Zen as a student of Shunryu Suzuki in 1966. Chadwick was ordained as a Buddhist priest in 1971, shortly before Suzuki’s death. He assisted in the operation of the San Francisco Zen Center for a number of years. Chadwick has two children and has married and remarried. He has written several books and continues to “dabble in Buddhism and related matters”.


 

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