My First Exhibit Review
For my first entry in my blog section I've decided to do something a little different.
Recently I had my first photography exhibit, 'Primitive Suburbia'
Everything went exceedingly well and I could describe in detail the ins & outs about the exhibit,
but I was so moved by a review from Elizabeth Chaykowski I'll let you judge how it went....
A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words: Maybe More.
So I have a pile of laundry to do, rivaling the height of Mount Everest. But after the glorious day I had yesterday, everything within Me is bouncing with excitement, wanting to document the days events. Then I hear the voice of Pashta Merry Moon, a very wise woman, a witch possessing great insight, from My Wiccan days whisper, “Go where the energy is.” In other words, follow your bliss, follow your excitement: follow the guidance of Inspired Inner Being Impulse. No contest. Being in front of the computer and reliving the pleasure of yesterday, wins hands down.
The plan was to attend an exhibition of photography by My good friend John Wenzel, a man who I have tremendous respect for and whose work I have long admired. I was also to meet a new friend for coffee, a lovely young lady by the name of Isabelle, and enjoy time sharing and becoming better acquainted with one another.
I began My day, as I usually do, with some yoga and meditation. While preparing for this morning ritual, it did not take long for Me to begin to feel My energy raise, as I pondered with anticipation the days coming events, and the potential for uplifting experiences of any and all kinds. During meditation, I found Myself pre-paving the day with affirming intentions that flowed naturally and easily in My mind. “ I so appreciate this day and its potential. I appreciate that everything is always working out well for Me and that today this will be evident by the ease and flow with which things unfold. I appreciate all of the people that I will encounter and it is My intention to see all that I see, through the eyes of My true Self and Source energy. It is My intention to be the love that I truly am and emanate that love naturally and enthusiastically in all that I do. I appreciate My life. I appreciate My body. I appreciate the sun in the sky. I appreciate the air that I breathe. I appreciate this day. I appreciate that it has already been orchestrated by providence to be a day of magic and wonder.”
I left My home with Frank Sinatra singing in My heart, “I’ve got the world on a string, sittin’ on a rainbow. Got that string around My finger. What a way, what a day. I’m in love.” Ah. Ol’ blue eyes!
When I arrived at the gallery, the magic began. I was greeted by John’s lovely smile. As all artists do, this man lights up when he is in his element and is allowing his highest creative Self to flow freely. We greeted one another with a sincere hug, and then anxious to be swept away, by what I judge to be his impeccable work, I began to absorb the displayed images with open mind and open heart. As usual, I was not disappointed.
How does one describe the style of this artist’s expression? As I slowly peruse the work, one piece after another I am increasingly impressed by several elements. First, one can simply not deny the evidence of a mastery of the contemporary tools of this art form. Having studied the art of photography back in the old days of the dark room, it becomes blatantly apparent to Me, that there is no way the images that John has been able to create, could have ever been accomplished with that pioneering technology. The images I am witnessing display a myriad of techniques whose application I cannot even to begin to imagine.
I am looking at images conjured by creativity and tool, that in some cases cause Me to believe that I am actually looking at paintings done in the style of high realism artists such as Alex Colville, who used egg tempura and canvas to produce images so cleanly real, they appear surreal. I am also looking at images that play with positive and negative, light and shade, in both black and white, and color, the creation of which I cannot even begin to understand. The techniques alone, implemented by this artist, are mystifying and alluring.
Which brings Me to the images themselves. The subjects, primarily people, although there are several urban landscapes as well, are sometimes raw and naked with sincerity, and at other times, whimsical yet with a hint of darkness. All of them are compelling and possess that quality of drawing the viewer in with just enough unease to cause one to ask questions. A definite propensity for being able to see the right moment with the third eye, and capture it with the fourth eye: the camera lens, is demonstrated without doubt. The artist has intimately connected with his subject on levels both conscious and unconscious and has managed to capture an aspect of humanity, sometimes light, sometimes dark but in all cases, quite authentic.
One feels that one has been invited in, to enter the private shadow world not only of those being portrayed, but of the artist himself, as he presents fantastical images of the costumed taboos that we often may think about, but rarely feel the freedom to express on a daily basis. The world of John Wenzel, is a world of haunting imagination, pushing the boundaries of emotion, with a bold yet subtle edginess, that is both compassionate and unapologetic.
Many images capture Me and stir the soul. A naked woman crouches in the corner of what appears to be the shower room of a long since abandoned institution, evoking the feelings of despair that we may occasionally feel when we have temporarily lost sight of our true greatness. An Edward Scissorhands like figure, stands in the foreground of a lavender hued landscape of electrical lines and towers. Is this androgynous being looking beyond the stark landscape to a future of hope? Are they waiting for some sort of sign of guidance to emerge from the purple colored sky? A zombie like, blood spattered clown with rubber mask, sits asunder upon a park bench, clutching a machete, seemingly exhausted from, and yet pleased with his debaucheries.
I am struck deeply by two pieces in particular. The first, entitled “Zen”, depicts a man strewn flat on his back with the words, “Help Me” carved into his chest. He lays there pitifully. To his left there is a Japanese Zen sand garden, as his right arm reaches out in the opposite direction into nothingness. In this piece, the technique echoing that of high realism, seems to emphasize the severity of this mans situation. I am struck by the irony depicted, as the figure cries out for help and the serenity he seeks is there adjacent to him in the garden of meditative peace. And yet, he reaches out in the opposite direction: the help he longs for, is so near, yet so far: separated from his perception, as he extends away from it, looking for love in all the wrong places.
The second piece that caught My attention and held it for quite some time was one entitled “Surtopia”. In it we see an image of what appears to be a man of middle age, wearing a short sleeved shirt: typical garb of what one might consider to be the attire of a desk clerk. We view him from behind. He stands in the dark, looking up at his house in suburbia. An old school television antenna perches atop the house. I immediately feel as if I am witnessing the silent, private moment, of one who did what he was told, followed all of the rules, got the secure government job, (complete with pension plan and full dental) and for the last twenty years of his life, faithfully showed up every day on time, brief case in hand. I try to imagine what he is thinking and in My head I hear a voice, “What if I would have followed My heart instead?” This piece is so appropriately titled.
After viewing this exhibition, I was left deeply moved and inspired. I must admit, that there were three instances, during which I was moved to tears by the images I was viewing. The ideas they were vacuuming to the forefront of My mind were poignant. So moved and impressed was I, that I have made the decision to enlist the talent of this gifted artist, to engage in a photo shoot of My own, trusting fully in John’s ability to help Me to reveal in an empathetic and accurate way, My own current stage of transmutation.
This mans work provides a divers and unique feast for the eyes and I would encourage any and all who enjoy the wonder and mystery of photography, to take time to run the fingers of their eyes over the projected images of his imagination. A picture is worth a thousand words and perhaps in this case, nay, an infinite number words, extending into wordlessness. Pure magic.
After exchanging several hugs with John, Isabelle, who joined Me at the exhibition, and I set off for a good brewed cup of coffee. Upon entering the coffee shop, we were greeted by a most eccentric and delightful server. She sang our orders back to us with humor and a wink. And the magic continued as Isabelle and I discovered that we shared so many perspectives and experiences in common. We shared with comfort, ease and flow, often laughing when uncovering similar humorous insights. I was so astounded and impressed by the wisdom and thoughtfulness being articulated so well by one so young, and was touched by one thing she said in particular. Her words were, “I realized that I didn’t have to try so hard at everything. All I had to do was just be my magnificent self and everything would just come to Me!” Say what?!!! It was as if infinite intelligence had just reached through her and spoken to Me directly, with no prompting or solicitation on My part. For the last month in My meditation, I have been receiving this exact message. It was as if through this young and bright seeker, the Universe was determined to drive its point home to Me, in a way that I could no longer dispute its validity. “Relax and bask in your magnificence. It’s all good. It’s all being taken care of and it’s all lined up for you. Just allow.” This message, by the way, I believe is a Universal message to all of us and it comes from the very heart that has originated all existence.
We finished our coffees, hugged and parted company, reveling in the edifying atmosphere that both our conversation and the exhibition had generated in each of us.
To cap the day off, I was further blessed by a rather handsome motorcycle rider, who flirted with Me while I waited for My bus. Never underestimate the ability of such things to lift a woman’s spirit and warm her cockles with an internal smile. It is always nice to glean evidence that you are working the law of attraction in ways that are yielding the desired results!
Sitting on the bus, on My way home, I continued to marvel at the wonderful events of the day. Recounting in My mind each and every delicious moment, every delightful word exchanged and how all had occurred, I was able clearly see reflected, the intentions and affirmations that I had mentally focused on and viscerally felt during My meditation earlier in the day. And finally when I arrived home, a little cherry on the top of the delectable ice cream sundae: a text from a nice fellow I met about a month ago, asking how I was and if he could possibly see Me once again! All in all a pretty good day of deliberate creating and positive manifestation, if I do say so Myself.
What miracle is this, this law of attraction? So reliable and unfailing in its ability to reflect back to us who it is we are and exactly where we are in terms of our alignment with our true Selves. How exciting to be privy to its workings and to participate more and more accurately in the working of it and with it?
After each day like this, I am filled with even greater and greater appreciation for everything: for My life and for all of the people in it, including Myself. On this day I am particularly appreciative of My friend John Wenzel and My new friend Isabelle. How blessed am I? How blessed are we all, to have come here to mix it up with our individual desires and intentions, and then watch how the Universe delivers, as we allow ourselves more and more to receive all that we deserve. Blessed indeed. We are royalty.
To close, for those interested, I will now leave you with a link, where you can find and enjoy the photographic work of My good friend. I hope you discover the imagery to be as compelling and thought provoking as I do. As always I wish you all, happy creating.
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