Wednesday, January 1, 2014

The Floodgates Have Opened

Some people would argue that I never stopped making art in the decade following my graduation from RISD.

That creating digital collages, the occasional small drawing/painting, designing websites, cards, costumes, patterns - and DANCING, that's all art. I made over 1000 corset belts, hundreds of bras, vests, and other costume items, from hair pieces to headdresses.  I definitely produced a lot of items. Definitely a lot of stuff people would define as wearable art.

So I can see the truth in that argument.

But compared to now? It feels different.

In the last year, I finally managed to create my first arts-only space, separate from my dance space.  Where I can paint, draw, design, craft, sew, etc - and that is all that space is for.  Combined with the idea of letting go that everything I make, must somehow make money -while also acknowledging that art is a major part of my income - this is new territory.

From my earliest memories, I have always made art.  There is something that happens in the art-making process that accesses and appeases a part of my brain in such a way that no activity - not even dance- can.  The procedure of making art is a trial and a conflict - I am simultaneously at peace, in a wrap of silence and solitude, all the while the voices in my head discuss/argue/comment every step of the way. And it's also about the way I can be totally immersed in some unrelated activity (watching a movie, dancing, making love, creating a meal) and suddenly have a vision of something I must draw or paint.  Then being able to just acknowledge whatever that vision is, sketch it, and come back to it later without questioning the how, what, or why.  That I can be out somewhere, and wish I had my sketchbook with.  (So I need to start bringing it with me everywhere.)

That, for me, is true art-making. I think the last few months, I have been warming up.  That I have awoken the beast - the one that lay dormant, hibernating, perhaps starving a bit (or a lot), and now is ready to create, that MUST create.  And the universe has seemed to have responded with a variety of open doors and windows.

Has it been waiting all this time?