"Above all else we uphold the individual's right to remain ignorant."
They say Ignorance is bliss.
This implies that it is better to not know than it is to be aware. It is easier to sleepwalk than it is to be enlightened.
In a way, I believe this.
The Artist is a creator…or at least, endeavors to be one. HE/SHE bears a cross that they, as long as they see themselves as a creator, must carry around with them for eternity. It is a personal journey,and you never know what is going to happen - which can be said for everyone on earth - however, more so for an Artist, because your work is something you never truly know the outcome of. An office worker clocks in at 9, finishes at 5…every day. He/She sits at a desk for 8 hours, types into word, checks emails, orders from Starbucks, chats to their friends, and then that he/she goes home.
The Artist does not have the same experience…the work is created by the Artist, not layed out for them to finish.
To be an Artist, you must be a fighter. You must wrestle with your abilities, grab at what you want to do and force it to bend to your will. If you are an Artist, you will forever be taking a chance. You will forever be working with the unknown, forever trying to will it to meet your expectations. You only truly have a certain amount of control, even over your own abilities. You don't start at 9, or finish at 5. There are ultimately no guidelines - you're on your own in that big unkown.
Yet, I, as an individual, have a great fear of the unknown. I dread what I cannot control.
I am suspicious of what I do not understand.
To me, ignorance is indeed bliss.
The world is a big and scary place. People all packed together like sardines in a can, and yet there is no feeling of unity. There are so many of us, but few who truly connect with us on an intimate level.
I often feel as though individuality is truly lost.
But we live now, in the present, which can be manipulated to a certain extent. I hate that idea of a great beyond, and yet so many people see it as a beacon of hope.
People are always so curious to know…what will happen when I die? Where will I go? What will I become?
Humans are so eager to believe that there must be SOME reason why we are here, some HUGE DEFINING SOMETHING. Religions imply that some almighty Lord put us here. Some people believe we are here as a test, a part of our spiritual journey.
In my mind, this is not relevant…I consciously do not want to know.
Can't we all just be? Does there HAVE to be a reason?
My fear of the unknown, of the untrustworthy, compels me to dismiss.
I reject to search for that which I will never find…I refuse to waste my time hoping that we never end.
Because, what if the truth is that we do end?
And yet, I contradict myself.
I lie to myself, every single day.
Because I am driven by a need to create something. I am an Artist, and I make things on a daily basis.
Artists invent. Artists essentially see themselves as creators.
My usual fear of the unknown is completely pointless, because everyday I create something that I have no real concept of. I don't truly know what I will create…I just subconsciously am compelled to do so.
But the difference is, there is no fear.
I reject the idea of eternity. I hate it…who wants to be around forever?
Well, I do.
Consciously, I fear it. But subconsciously I am only human, as are we all. And as a human being I want eternity, in some way, just like most do…through creation.
An Artist creates, and when the Artist has accomplished that creation it will sustain a life that will never end in a sense. It will have always been, even perhaps if we do not keep every one of our creations…we are sure to keep a few.
Those few may collect dust long after I'm gone. But because of them, in a way, I won't be going.
This, to me, is Art. Art makes sense because it is my chance to make something of myself. It is my way of taking pieces of my own life, the parts that are the most meaningful, and ensuring that they stays safe.
Art is my way of making sense of a world that I do not believe in.
So perhaps ignorance is not always bliss.
Author's Note: Thought I'd quickly explain why I wrote this essay/manifesto. I'm a Fine Artist, and writing is a large part of my practice...writing has been a hobby of mine for years, and here I was just exploring my personal need to make Art, and how it fits in with my life. But I mostly wrote it because by being honest about how I feel about Art, I was hoping to get other people to reply to me with their own feelings - I'm more interested in hearing what others have to say in regards to this subject...so if you plan on writing me a review, please write about how you feel, or your emotional response to my piece...I'd really really appreciate that if possible.
This essay is part of a project I created named "Uphold Individuality" which is essentially Artists/Musicians/Writers or creative people communicating with each other and sharing ideas...here's the Blog if you're interested in participating :)
Thanks so much for reading. xx