I ventured there and back several times over the long weekend and I am filled with energy and creativity. The gift of inspiration which comes to us all, through these magical worlds created in clay and on canvas, or with dozens of casters, or wax, stretched plastic, neon lights, nails, scrap metal, glass, recycled detritus, solid graphite, rock, wood, plastic, and any other manner of medium, not least of which is of course paint…and all with love and passion.
This is the stuff that changes the world with hope and connection. Where art lives, people thrive and prosper, and yet then still so much is left unseen, but by a privileged few of us. We can take time out of our work lives at our leisure, or make it part of our work lives. How do we share it out to the broader community? How do we offer our art up to the masses?
There is a kind of spontaneous optimism that happens when individual minds are exposed to the unbridled imagination of an artistic endeavor. Music and beauty lift the spirit and the heart, and I believe that collectively as artists and patrons of the arts, that we have to do more to share our world to every corner of society.
Laura Fried, Artistic Director of the Seattle Art Fair, says it beautifully in her press release, “Our goal with the program is to connect with a broad audience at a time when locals and tourists alike alight this beautiful city, and to offer encounters with contemporary art in meaningful and surprising ways.”
At this strained time in our modern history, with cultural tensions, terrorism and Trump on the rise, ignorance and fear abound. It is now when we need to take every measure to bring art programs back into schools and into hearts. I am so proud to have committed my weekend to supporting CoCA’s mission, whose core focus is to open the conversation about contemporary art, across borders and social boundaries.
Art educates, and provides solace and refuge. On both biophysical and metaphysical levels, the very essence of imagination provides measurable beneficial improvements in our brain synapses and neural networks. Thus, generating the impetus to learn and grow, and enhance our moods, and our energy and drive, and our hope.
Art is as critical to life as is freedom. Life without either is void. This is how dictatorships like Germany and Russia were able to so deeply control their people during those infamous and deadly decades which mar our collective history. They killed the artists, or banished them to Siberia, and stole the artworks (which they of course kept for their private solace). They broke the spirit of their people and were then able to easily take control for their evil and most foul business.
Art, and poetry, and literature, and dance, and music heal us all. Thank God we are not dealing with such aggressive powers and chaos of those dark times. But, something has got to give. I am grateful for my white middle class privilege, which has given me a rare gift to share for beauty and healing works for the betterment of all. If I can do more art, by golly I must do it, and my part to bring the language of art to the farthest reaches of my community.
Under the creative direction of our ED Nichole DeMent, CoCA is headlong into a highly acclaimed series of exhibitions at our PS35 Gallery, and I could not be more proud to be a part of it all. These are absolutely the right conversations to be happening right now, AND, how do we do more to generate ongoing conversations into the future?
As artists and supporters, indeed as individuals, I believe it is all of our collective responsibility to do our bit for the effort to bring beauty and imagination into the world, and to combat ignorance, fear and the resulting violence. I am so very inspired by it all this weekend down at SAF, and I feel compelled to do more to share art outside our cloistered walls. I want others to be as inspired as I feel now. Fingers cross, and gears locked in!
For now I will begin by sharing below a few of my favorite pieces from the Seattle Art Fair and neighboring Seattle area artist exhibition Out of Site (at King Street Station).