Beginning…

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I’m an artist. I’m fortunate to be surrounded by fantastic people who are interested in my process, invested in my development and genuinely care about my life as an artist. It’s a tremendous gift, really…these people.

And because of these people I find myself in conversation on a regular basis discussing my work. Let me be clear, my life is my work and my work is my life. I don’t know if that’s good or not good, I just know that there seem to be no edges to where my work ends and begins in relation to all that I am.

Anyway… these conversations quite regularly illuminate an aspect that is sometimes (not always) present in art-making. Sometimes there is an “unsayability” to the work. I don’t so much mean the things you won’t say, but the things you are continually reaching for, the ambiguity, the teetering, the wrestling to articulate… The things you can’t quite say. And I’m coming to believe more and more that the unsayability is ok, it’s important, it’s necessary.

However, in all of the unsayability I can tell you this about what is happening in my studio and in my life… I’m beginning.

I’m beginning a body of work that seems altogether different than anything in the past. The work, the research, the process, the imagery… all of it is new and different.

Sure I’m excited about the possibilities and yes, we like to talk about beginnings as these wonderful chapters where we leave the old behind and move onto what is new, as if everything’s rainbows and roses and lollipops. But the truth is that beginnings are also painful. They are messy. They are difficult. When I gain something new, I am also losing something that is old.

Something is dying so that something new might live.

In the midst of this beginning, I am more aware of my own vulnerability, of how much I don’t know, of my tenderness, of my need for others and for God. I guess this is what growth looks like.

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