Some of us were born with the Art Spirit. I believe it is a gift to be taken with gratitude and consideration. Artists have a role in society beyond being the creative person who makes things. We are here to inspire creativity, awareness, and an open mind to perspectives other than our own.
The creative culture guides society, and it is our responsibility to help shape the future. With this in mind, we eventually ask ourselves, “What kind of influence do I wish to be?” At middle-life, I have been struck with the ugly awareness that I, like so many of us, have way too much stuff. We have innocently and unconsciously been convinced that we want things we don’t need, or maybe worse, that we need things we don’t want, until we wind up sitting proudly amidst our personal accumulation of stuff. It’s all okay if we never think about it, but the reality is that all this consumption has created quite a lot of garbage on a beautiful planet, and we’re leaving it all for our children to clean up.
At the end of 2012, I set a life goal to organize my mess. I realized I have acquired enough collage material for one lifetime. I can be done scavenging and seeking in hopes of finding that next great book of images. After all, collage is a lemons-to-lemonade medium, and the art is in the arrangement of the things at hand. While I do believe that great subject matter is essential to great compositions, I also understand great is a subjective adjective, and the magic of collage is in its ability to beautify the mundane. For the limited amount of time I have to play with collage, the truth is I probably have way more material than I will ever be able to use.
I perform best when I am challenged. I am sorting through everything I have collected, separating the wheat from the chaff. My intention is to create collages and assemblages with the worthy material, and dispose of the rest, recycling as much as can be recycled. My ultimate goal, if I am blessed enough to live a full life through, is to finish life as it began, with nothing, in my birthday suit.