Imagine you were asked to sit down and think about your life. You would be given a clean sheet of paper and had to lay out in 500 words your life’s philosophy. Could you do that?
Describe and explain your life choices – some you made intuitively, some just happened to you (or did they…). Your love, whom you chose to share your life with. Your relationships. The number of kids you have and why, your parenting. Your job, your house, the food you eat, your sleeping habits, your dreams and future plans. Ask yourself these questions, answer them truthfully, then connect the dots and try to find meaning. That’s what it’s like to write an artist statement.
I finished mine this week (thank god for deadlines) doubtful and tired.
On the bright side of it: Addressing myself as an artist – making a statement of it has its impact. It made me realize some truths about my work, it made me think about my path, where I am at, what inspires me, what materials I’ve been working with. It made me want to go out immediately and create more… new ideas and developments of old ones.
But at the same time, it felt like it narrows me down, puts me in a box, too tight and limited. The creative life is full of inquiries, search for meaning and sometimes intuitive playfulness and experimentation, this felt like shutting off a wild part of me that wants to create freely without having to explain or rationalize anything. Art should be experienced not talked about.
Like reasoning your belief, like revealing a magician’s tricks, like explaining a fairy tail – Instead of riding my wild dragon for moments it felt like I was defining its flight regulations.