Fully Armored Jude Harzer 2008I received an inquiry about the exhibit that I plan to curate, inspired by the very powerful and universal experience , we refer to as “Love.” The show is planned to debut in 2011. It is a collaborative effort . My art and the art of others will be enhanced by the writings of a very talented emerging author and compositions by an equally gifted musician. The three are inextricably connected and are necessary in order to fully convey the essence of this exhibit. Art, like love, is multi- sensory and multi faceted.
The idea for this show became clear as I sat outside the home of friend and fellow artist, Carol Saylor this past December. Anyone that dares to spend time with me, knows that the conversation is rarely “light.” .Carol endures my persistent questionings, musings, and pleas for answers regarding life, love, purpose and passion. Carol “knows” life and love. She has suffered great tragedy and pain. Despite premature blindness and deafness during mid life, the loss of a daughter , ( Alice a mother of 3 , in her 30’s) ,to cancer, the death of her husband and so much more, Carol radiates energy, strength and beauty. How and why does anyone navigate this life with persistence and purpose in the face of great pain,loss and failure ? There have been many people who have graced my life who I have witnessed do just that….move forward despite the hard knocks and obstacles, with unusual persistence and vigor. Again I ask "How and why? "
….Always, always, the answer makes a resounding reference to LOVE! Love, passion, hope and a belief in something greater than ourselves, is a powerful motivation that reveals in us strength and greatness beyond our wildest imaginations. And yet, “love”, misunderstood, unexpressed, rejected or absent , has the potential to consume, destroy and diminish. Perhaps this is not love at all, but personal perception is not a tidy and universal process to be defined.
I’m not simply talking about the hearts and roses of romantic love, although that certainly provides a wealth of inspiration. I am referring to the entire spectrum of the experience….the good, the bad, the pure…young love, true love, first love ,mature love, unrequited love….the love of a parent, a friend, a lover, a child. We are often motivated by the love of country, the love of learning, the love of freedom, the love of God , nature and life itself. Is it possible to genuinely and fully love many, or do we reserve our love for a chosen few? Why do we crave , live, die , and pray for it? Unconditional love…does that even exist? And why do we fade in the absence of it? All I know is that love matters and sustains us in times of need. It exposes beauty where there appears to be none . Love makes the seemingly mundane appear extraordinary and unites us in ways that give meaning to our brief moments here in this life.
Another exceptional friend, fellow artist, art historian and educator Trish Maunder, once told me that love is the “stuff’ that inspires all great art .I believe she is right! So as I journey to make sense of it, I have become an observer of this phenomenon and have learned to embrace rather than resist it.Yes, when we expose our hearts, we are left unguarded and more susceptible to pain, tears and potential hurt. But comfortably numb is not living and over time, the pain of regret, is far greater than any love, lost or found.
So this isn’t a Valentine’s exhibition. It is about life, love and inspiration and I am blessed to have plenty of it all! Live and love HUGE!
PS… Dino… the one you love! This one is for you Pork Chop:) See image above for reference. All rights reserved Hanna Barbera.
Check Carol Saylor out on you tube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2TcJ0KZHIR8&feature=related