As a younger artist, whenever I honestly and seriously delved into a creative project, almost any kind of exhibition project, and then discovered how much I enjoyed working on it no matter how long it took to complete, I would typically find it hard to understand how anyone could possibly think otherwise. Some might call this obsessive, borderline narcissistic behavior, and maybe it is. But art is demanding and if you aren’t fully immersed and don’t believe what you’re working on is the most important thing in your life, I wonder if what you produce is actually worth working on in the first place.
Honest art, as opposed to decorative art, is demanding, ruthless, and usually misunderstood.
While the passion wasn’t exactly overpowering, I remember often feeling an intoxicating surge of happiness that made me want to share the discovery and the ensuing enthusiasm with anybody willing to listen to me.
In retrospect, I realize that it might as well have been my enthusiasm rather than the creative output that generated the positive feedback. I’ve spoken at some length with fellow artists about this phenomenon which is in some distant way related to subliminally creating hysteria. Enthusiasm is undeniably smiting and I am just as guilty as anyone else for getting excited about the excitement rather than the work it has exuded.
My ongoing “Resurfaced” series is a great example of this occurrence. I honestly don’t think most people really get the concept but are nonetheless thrilled to be smitten by my enthusiasm for it. This might be a reflection of how little enthusiasm they have in their lives, but that’s a whole different topic for another post.
The pursuit for new artifacts for the Resurfaced series is unwavering, regardless of how commercially viable the project turns out to be. The voice of reason has long left the building. And creatively, that’s a good thing.
The piece above is from a wall in the Saint Pauli district of Hamburg, Germany.