Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Busy with paint

Tiny easels, acrylic paintings, Magick and the impulse to create.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Constructing, Deconstructing...

Jewelry. Finding little tiny things to put into jewelry is even better than just looking at little tiny things. Don't get me wrong, I love looking at tiny things, but wearing them around all day is the best.

Things have been really serious lately, especially world circumstances that have been pasted all over Facebook in the last month. I have been sucked into the darker thoughts and fear based emotions, feeding them with mass media headlines. I stopped watching the "News" on television a long time ago because I realized all they were reporting were the horrible things in the world. I want to know what is happening, but at the same time, I am trying to get back to a more balanced approach.  I am choosing to spend time doing something creative instead of dwelling on circumstances outside of the moment I am in right now.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

How Life Happens

There is a lot going on with me and the world in general these days. I have so much to share, please bear with me in all of the means and messages. For this particular moment, I have something to share regarding a strong reaction/influence of a show that I love on facebook...

But, before that...I am also diving deep back into creating art as a necessity for my soul. And I have created a new studio corner space:  One of the cats had to inspect it, of course.

Chef's Table episode 2.
Once I literally licked a magazine page because the advertising said “lick here”.
I am so full of sensory information from my upbringing in Africa. Yes, I am talking about Africa yet again.
But the potency of smells from my childhood are immediate time travelling triggers.
I have always wanted to somehow incorporate all of the senses into my art...touch, taste, smell, sight, hear.
All of these senses are so important,  and each one can instantly teleport you to either a new dimension, or an old one revisited through Nostalgia.

So, watching the “Chef’s Table, season 2, has reminded me of all of these elements. Also, you get to literally watch Unicorns being born through the telling of their life stories.

These are people who have gone to the Underworld and have resurfaced to tell a new story. The theme happens to be food. But it encompasses all of life...all of the senses in the grandest scale.

The first episode was dynamic. It touched upon invention, rejuvination, daring, peril, life cycles, ending and beginning,  and the force of looking Life and Death in the eye and saying, No. Defiance in the most beautiful expression. ..creativity. Asking questions. Daring to keep going in the most dire of circumstances. ..or possibility of circumstances.  
Enter:episode 2...A man wearing a shirt that says: Death Happens.

Delectable. Mind expanding.

A Yes to Life, because Life inevitably includes Death.  

So, the chef goes and takes a mind bending drug-induced trip and discovers the answer to what the meaning of life is. But the, he forgets. And is plagued by the fact that he cannot remember the answer. BUT...he has a dream…
He is shown a flower. And that the flower is the circle of life. And the most beautiful moment of the circle is the moment we live.

Fireworks. Awakeness.  Aliveness. YESSS!

Who is this person? Who is the documentarian who discovered all of these magic souls in the middle of everything?  

Oh My Heart, underneath everything, I feel it inside my bones. Everything is connected. The Earth, this planet we inhabit lives and breathes in and out.

And it is suffering a slow death on the macrocosm...the same way we suffer a slow death on the microcosm of working a corporate job, isolated from the breath of the earth, but at the same time connected as we pillage it's resources, one purchase at a time. We don't see that death enters into each meal we eat..whether it be meat or vegitation. We are pillaging our planet because we are not connected to it first hand. Homoginization is killing the flourishing of creative, diverse life on every level.

You keep watching episode 2 and you get to travel through the Underworld.  Through the story of deep personal struggle...of being an outsider, to the moment of realization of place and time and meaning.  
You get to feel how your crazy, individual experience of life matters. And you feel that surge of anger and disappointment of not belonging to the place and/or circumstance you find yourself in...up until you look in the mirror and realize you are “a tatooed man who is Brazilian “...or whatever you happen to be...and that is the empowering moment. You don't have to try and be anything other than who you are, who you were born to be.

The moment you realize this, is the moment you can tap into the deep well that is you. You are not unlike the flowers of your upbringing or the fish that swim in a certain sea. Except, you are a human in this time, and you get to choose.

You can embrace the knowing that comes from your bones, that formed there from the time you were born. You don't have to follow anyone else's path. Because your path is yours, and no one elses.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

I am still painting. And re-inventing myself. Acrylic. 30"x40".

Dreams and Possibilities

What if there was absolutely nothing holding you back from your dreams?

What if your dreams were in fact not dreams at all, but a very real thing?

What if you woke up tomorrow and decided to just do the things in your soul at that moment, for every moment of the day? What if you decided to experiment and see what happens if you do that?

What if the iconic humans you are so inspired by because they are constantly creating amazing things are just like you?

I am going to experiment. I am going to wake up and do the small  things that come out of my dreams, my heart’s desire. No holds barred.

Because, life is short, right?

I used to abide by that “life is short” business. Life is too short for this shit, I used to say.

But somehow that has turned into, oh, wait, life is long, and I had better prepare for playing it “safe” , by making sure I do something that will bring in this steady flow of money, that will give me benefits, that will make sure that death is as far away as possible, and life is as steady as it can get.

But wait….what about all of the people who looked so steady, who looked so grounded and who had it all together, and who just suddenly died in the middle of it?

As a Gemini, yes, I have these polarizing thoughts from one extreme to the other. This need for absolute meaning in my life has become an internal battlefield, rendering me useless and resentful in a lot of moments.

I used to have death close to me, I saw it on the faces of the people I encountered in my childhood. I was reminded of this recently when someone posted a video on facebook of a short documentary on the street kids of Nairobi, and the rampant drug problem that exists. Luckily the end of the film lets you take a breath of hope, that someone is actively helping and solving this problem. I spent my life from age 3 to 13 in Nairobi, apart from a few months in the U.S. every 2 and a half years. Then I spent two years in Colorado, and was lucky enough to return to Kenya for my last two years in highschool, with all of my childhood friends.

But now, I am here, back in the U.S., and have been for over 14 years. I have adopted this bubble of ridiculous nonsense “insulation” from death or destruction.

Most people in the world have to wake up and at least be faced with the fact that death or destruction could occur at any moment. But not here.

Here is a slow death. A death of soul in fact. Who knew? Creating an environment where safety, money via a full time job and benefits would mean a slow bleeding death of boredom and irrational attachments?

When you are a teenager you are close to the moments you had as a child...raw and free, but more because you know more, have experienced more.

I think what I am trying to say is that I want to reject “adulting”. I don’t ever want to be an adult, at least not in this culture.

I want to be that curious teenage/child who still questions everything, and who is willing to give up that pseudo-safety feeling and replace it with the fact that I am still alive and breathing, and for that fact alone, means ANYTHING can happen.

I subscribe and follow and am mesmerized by all of these humans I encounter {from far away mostly, but sometimes up close} who have discovered they don’t have to live “on the table”.

Let me explain “living on the table”.

When I was in college, I took an anthropology course, and simultaneously discovered a bunch of other shit which expanded my horizons magnanimously destroyed all of the non-truth foundations I thought I had built my life on. So, I was infatuated with my professor. This man from the Africa I had come from, except he was from another small West African country which I don’t remember now, and I had hailed from an East African country...sort of...not being born from it like he was.

I was broken hearted in many ways, but mostly I was broken hearted because I had discovered so many broken hearted souls, particularly indigenous tribes, who had been done wrong by this Western idealist, work and get money for food life.
A slave life, essentially. The opposite of my studies of cultures who had learned for centuries how to care for themselves, and the earth simultaneously.

I had a burning question, which came from articles I had read that explained that you don’t have to  change everything in your destructive culture, you simply have to “get off the bandwagon”.

This meant, not shopping at a grocery store, or any store for that matter, this meant the dissolution of money itself. I remember bawling my eyes out, wanting to save the world and change everything, and asking how I could “get off the bandwagon.” I decided to ask my professor. He was dumbfounded. He had no idea how to answer my questions. But I know I challenged him with my questions. He had a lesson about how culture is like a table, and it was easy to exist on one table, but pretty much impossible to jump to another table. That angered me, and stayed with me. Because, for one thing, haven’t I “jumped tables” a few times, just by not having a table of my own, growing up in another country, and having to make things up myself all along?

As much as I have been able to silence this voice within me and adopt this “adulting”/ Saturnian, and I admit, somewhat “grounding” lifestyle, I have not been able to silence it completely.

There is the knowledge, the complete knowing in one’s bones, of the truth of how things are tap into the Gaiya. The Knowing. The thing that ungrounds the Saturian roots of linear time and money equaling safety. The place where you trust that where you are is where you are meant to be right now, in this very moment. You can question it all you want, but things only reveal their magic once you accept them.

But, somewhere between dreams and reality, there is truth, there is the fact that all of this we are experiencing, we are dreaming up, we are clinging onto, is not permanent. Everyone, and everything dies...even rocks, kind of. They get reincarnated faster, usually more than once in one lifetime, at least by the way we describe lifetimes.

But, once we have woken up, and we realize all of this, what are we supposed to do with it? Once you realize you are a Unicorn, what are you supposed to do with that information?

One of my fellow classmates of a practical Magick said recently that it isn’t enough to just realize who you are, but that once you do, you better do something about it.

I know that when I have been “balls to the wall” before, I have ventured off my own superfluous cliffs and have made myself write things, paint things, and actually teach classes on creating. I had a reading recently, by the amazing Aeolian Hear who suggested I take “baby steps” toward my intention of creating and teaching again. The first step being, sharing the wonders of my mind with the public. So, here I am, sharing my mind again.

I also know that every time I get to this plane, I freak out thereafter and retreat in fear and shame. “Who the fuck am I to know all of these things, and suppose I can see beyond the barriers of culture…..who the fuck cares? The most important thing of all is that you have a full time job, and benefits, and you keep your head down to the point of silence. No ripples, no interrupting the status quo.”

Remember that “life is short” business I was talking about? Recently, Uriel Grey, suggested that my personality profile, of the Myers-Briggs might be ISFP. I never remember what my profile is, even though I have taken dozens of different types of personality tests over the years. Most suggest the truth of being a creative person, artist, writer type with possible career choices in teaching, psychology, counseling, that type of thing. But, this time, reading the entire profile of an ISFP, it was literally like someone wrote a book about my life and my internal thoughts. LIterally, down to the part where, in the middle of the page, in bold lettering, part of my personality screams: Life's too Short for Us to Bore Ourselves

What I realized from reading this was that my personality was what was creating these internal struggles surrounding what I am doing with my life. But I question everything. I second guess everything.

But then, I read, or watch, or hear from one of my many idols, the people who embody who I wish I was at every moment. And I still sit there in awe, like I am not capable or worthy enough to embody what they are embodying, or have embodied their whole lives. I watch the artist Carrie Hiligert post these amazing works of art, spilling the corners of her soul out for the world to see and experience. She, incidentally, also does amazing readings that I highly recommend. The thing I love most about her is that she shares the beautiful and the ugly moments of her life. She reveals herself to be true, having discovered many wonderful things about life, but she also shares her questions and her doubts. This is particularly inspiring to me.

Recently I experienced something different. I actually felt like I knew one of my idols,. I actually felt like, shit, I could be them. They are human, I am human. The only thing stopping me from becoming them is my own fear, my own clinging to this ridiculous notion that I am not yet there, not developed enough, not stable enough, don’t have enough money to be able to venture off into this great unknown adventure. {while at the same time knowing that even my most “stable” seeming environment is still an unknown adventure of sorts.}....{side note: Mumford and Sons: Awake My Soul….” where you invest your love is where you invest your life”}. Incidentally, my best friend posted this article revolving around Neil Gaiman’s speech a few years ago to a graduating college class. He was the idol, he was the one I felt so close to, and realized that I am not so unlike him, except for the fact I have let fear divide me from my creations, and my own self knowledge. But, I feel like I am done with that. I am so tired from keeping all of this down, and in.

And, ever since I started thinking about these possibilities, I have seen a plethora  of videos posted from various sources of people discussing this very subject. Here’s one of Peter Dinklage on the subject. Here’s another one, even more raw in it’s message from Seth Rogan. My dream is to be like these people, who seem to exist on another plane than me. But, if you listen to their messages, it is ever apparent that they are just human beings, taking one step at a time toward their own dreams and own desires. One of my all time favorite authors, Elizabeth Gilbert, does an amazing job at conveying her message in such a down to earth tone in this video.

I am willing to go beyond. To ask more questions, to experiment and just be more alive. Just for this moment. And Each moment thereafter. I am not going to give up all Saturnian aspects of my life, like linear time, or having a job of some sort, or grocery shopping. But in between those things, I am going to invest my time in at a time. Baby steps.

Because, isn’t that really what life is? A series of “thereafter moments”? No one knows when they will draw their final breath. So, let’s just stop pretending like we know. Let’s be. And let’s be big...let’s shine ourselves like giant fucking lighthouses, that we know we are anyway...

Friday, March 29, 2013

Blind Color Adventure

Back to paint layers. Too much thinking has left me abandoning my paintbrush for weeks. Today I was inspired by a color, and that is how I began. I just wanted to look at a color, and then I painted. As usual I have no idea where these paintings are going, but it will be an adventure that I have to keep forcing myself to take.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Spring Cleaning Sale

Ladies and gentlemen....I am working on a new batch of paintings. So, I thought it would be a good idea to make my already existing paintings available for less. Starting today, on my etsy shop...ArtExperiments, if you use the coupon code 12345 you will get five dollars off any of my listed paintings. This sale will be on until April 11th. I hope you have fun, and find something you would like to adopt. Happy spring!