Saturday, September 20, 2008

art, meaning and families

What do female artists do? Does anyone ever question thier sense of purpose. As Women, are we supposed to put everyone before our creative urges and wants. We are told we must fit these wild and crazy inspirations between family gatherings and the needs of our partners. If we don't turn a huge profit, we are told we are playing, that what we do doesn't count. How do we fit our real selves into these pictures without feeling guilty and selfish= because someone told we were?
What makes us real?

"I was his mother and his wife and now I want the luxury of my own life"
Ani DiFranco

best response ( Thank YOU)
Expressing yourself thorough your art is who you are. You really have no choice but to keep doing it. The Alternative is to crawl into a fetal position and die; Period. End of Discussion. As one who has been married FOREVER, I have found that the agreements we made to share our lives together need re-negotiation. The old paradigms we lived by because the kids were small or money was needed to educate them etc no longer exist. Men have trouble with that, especially those who are successful. At this stage of the game our relationships need to be mutually nuturing.. whether it be a marriage, friendship or parent/grown child. I don't know where your fulcrum rests but you need to feel you are in a good place to sustain both yourself (your art) and a joyful relationship.
2 quotes
"Nobody deserves your tears, but whoever deserves them will not make you cry." Gabiel Marques
"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." Dr Seuss

5 comments:

Connie Rose said...

Wen, in The Creative Fire audiobook by Clarissa Pinkola Estes, she recites part of a very long poem she wrote called, I think, "How to Silence a Woman." Your post reminded me of that because all those things that our families and others expect us to do, including put our art on the back burner for any number of reasons, are vehicles for silencing us. Try to find the poem, or definitely check out The Creative Fire.

Louise Schiele said...

Wen...I saw your post on SAQA and now here on your blog and have to answer...what you are feeling is something all of us (women) feel..the feeling of not having any worth...and I believe we are taught this at a very early age..to get above that feeling is very difficult but totally possible. There have been many times I've said "I'm packing it all up and taking down my studio, not laying my hands on fiber again." That's when I take a walk or get involved in something else and before I know it, I'm back working on something wonderful again and it's passed. I always try to remember not to let anyone or anything "should" on me and what they think I "should" be doing..it's my call, not what they think. Take a deep breathe and you'll get back to it in time.
Louise Schiele, Sacramento, Ca
(full time studio artist, 61 and going strong)

Radish said...

I have solved this dilemma by being too ugly for men to even look at twice (this had the added benefit of making me almost invisible to my family of origin--they're humiliated by my failure). All kinds of time alone to do whatever I want. Way too much time, way too much alone. Grass is always greener over the leaky septic tank, is it not? Count your blessings.

Roberta Nelson said...

Wen, wow you blog really resonated with me visually and emotionally. I have been married for almost 30 years and my husband is a successful professional. Our kids are 18 and 21, one graduates from h.s. and one from college nex spring. I have an 83 yo Mom who I am very close to who is preparing to leave for the great hereafter shortly...i.e. she has very bad heart disease. And I am spreading my wings and committing to my fabric art and my hearts desires in a new, big way. I have a coach and she is a jewel. And the trasnisiton is challenging, fear, others needs etc and when i read your stuff, I am recommitted and motivated. So, thank you. it is good to know I am not alone on this journey!

cheers,
Roberta

Bethel of Bethania said...

G'day Wen
Gosh I thought I was the only one that had a problem with non-creative folks understanding a 'need' we have to create even if it's only for ourselves or family gifts that creative urge does become so strong especially when stiffled by family that say you need family commitment ... putting you on the guilt trip of your life ... but I do think it is because we are forging a new era. We were taught by our mothers & grandmothers, what was right & proper to do with our lives - even when it meant that we didn't have 'lives' of 'our own' - then the shift came - we grew caring men who encouraged their women to be themselves that it was right & proper to be who you wanted to be Plus the women of today demand their place so for the creative women this must be wonderful BUT some of us are still caught-up in the change/shift so it becomes a mental mindfield negotiating our way to this new creative freedom pursusing 'our voice'... Thanks for such an interesting & inspiring post... OOroo ... Bethel of Bethania

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