Every time I post an article about a contemporary artist, every time I promote an exhibition, every time I publish another issue of Inspirational, is another reason to be proud, another reason to celebrate. So that is what this post is about, pride and celebration.
The illustration shows a mosaic of 23 of the artists that will be featured in the upcoming Inspirational 12, but it could easily have been of any of the artists that I have featured over the months and years, though it seemed fitting somehow to connect with the latest part of the inspirational project. I hope they don't mind being in a mosaic, and being part of this post, I am sure they won't, they are such a great and genuine bunch of people.
To me art has never been recreational. It isn't a hobby, or a spare-time filler, it is a destiny, a one-stop meeting with the fates. This community is awash with poets and angels, they just don't always recognise themselves. It's a special community, one that is often denigrated and misunderstood by outsiders. There is within the creative mind, a natural depth of understanding, and a sensitivity to what really matters in life, something that is rarely found in the day to day running of the norm. Artists and the artistic community, play a vital role in what it is to be human, they help shape our view of the world, and of ourselves.
The health of this community reflects the health of us all. That is why it is so important that this community flourishes and thrives. For every artist that has to give up their dream of living for their work, the community loses a spark, a pulse, a beat of the heart, but for every individual who makes the jump into the community, whether they are 18 or 80, to take that leap into being something more, the art community gains immeasurably. It doesn't matter what they do creatively, or what they don't do. It is not for us to criticise, it is for us to celebrate, and celebration for the act of being or becoming an artist seems to be something we rarely do as a community.
We need to make more of ourselves and our community, we need to be prouder and more celebratory, less self-deprecating and certainly less apologetic. We need to form stronger connections between ourselves, we need interconnecting practical support and platforms, as well as genuine understanding and compassion. We shouldn't see ourselves as standing alone. Whether we are successful or struggling, whether we are a student or an established artist, whether we are inner city or rural, we all owe it to each other to hold out a helping hand.
Personally, I feel privileged and proud to have been able to support and promote this community in my small way. I now want to do that in a much bigger capacity, I just haven't figured out how yet, but I will, don't worry. I have good friends and connections that will help me I am sure, and for that I am truly grateful.
I love this eclectic community of individuals, oddballs, weirdos, upside-downers, wrong-way rounders. It is my home, my tribe, my community.