New Directions

Today I am less active. I had my heart broken a bit. Art is weird. It can generate a multitude of responses from appreciation to dismissal. Art for me today meant shifting gears and doing something different. I’ve internalized now that different isn’t bad it’s just different… but I still feel off. I feel like somehow I failed to be me.

Friday didn’t go amazing. Or at least today I don’t feel like it did. I’m redirecting at the kind suggestion of my prof. As much as I thought it would happen I feel betrayed because this isn’t the first time I’ve experienced this. My approach to art involves just making work that gives me the feeling I have never been more alive or more myself. That is until I am abruptly informed that “actually this is no good *shrug*”. In that situation  I do two things. The first is to remind myself it has nothing to do with me. The second is to let myself feel the hurricane of bubbling emotion that is my overly sensitive self.

The “it’s not me” is supposed to be about acceptance. Accepting that the other person may not be in the same place as me or able understand something. It comes down to saying “You aren’t me. You feel different” Acceptance is the first step to calming down and reinforcing others’ individuality. They get to decide things I wouldn’t, don’t like, or refuse to believe. It doesn’t always work that way and it gets conflicted quickly. The height of the conflict is that hurricane of emotions I have. Saying it isn’t me doesn’t change the feeling that it is and somehow deep down I failed. I failed to be the best Ange. I failed to teach or communicate. I wonder if they could have appreciated my work if I had done a better job. Mixed in with that hurt is a slight sense of betrayal.

The betrayal comes from my long history of ecstatic independence and rarely needing external encouragement. If by chance I received external praise/affirmation/appreciation/awe I go manic. I think all the stars have aligned and I am finally being The best me. I am a person of extremes and at the hint of rejection (or what I perceive as rejection) I am temporarily destroyed.

That was today.

As much as I don’t want this to be a whole thing about my feelings they strongly dictate my work. I can’t work until I’ve worked through my feelings and I did so with the help of Timon. I cried and expressed my pain and discomfort at being told to try something new. She shared with me and told me to pursue my passions. I doubt she expected what that would entail.  I started drawing on paper, then the wall, then I had a classmate remove my t-shirt and I pressed my body against the white wall covered in charcoal. I sprayed it with water and pressed and rubbed myself against it.

This is my new direction. I’m building off an old sketch of performative drawings using my body. The way my skin gently sands away and become raw and stinging…I like it because it speaks to me personally on so many levels that I don’t even bother discussing. This is my new direction though and I don’t know what will happen with the shaman stuff. I’m sad to see it go but I also understand that for some now is not the time. My new adventures are about the body and how it interacts with itself and its limitations.


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