• The Awakening

    Date posted: March 15, 2010 Author: jolanta
    When eight years of your adult life is consumed with creating something most people around you think outlandish, stupid, wasteful, sinful, desperate, ugly, pointless, or perverse, and this is after floundering so many years prior on what exactly to consume one’s creative energy on, only to hear from your wife, family, and friends once you think you’ve got it all down, finally figured it out, that your sanity (“Who’s paying for it?”), logic (“What for?”), timing (birth of a son) and purpose (no gallery representation, no planned show) are all off.

    Gregory de la Haba

    Gregory de la Haba, 2009. Courtesy of the artist.

    When eight years of your adult life is consumed with creating something most people around you think outlandish, stupid, wasteful, sinful, desperate, ugly, pointless, or perverse, and this is after floundering so many years prior on what exactly to consume one’s creative energy on, only to hear from your wife, family, and friends once you think you’ve got it all down, finally figured it out, that your sanity (“Who’s paying for it?”), logic (“What for?”), timing (birth of a son) and purpose (no gallery representation, no planned show) are all off. And when you’ve heard countless times via the worst sort of grapevine: “Where’s all his money going?” and you know no answer would suffice, but you thank God it’s not going up your nose although at times you’ve felt maybe it should, because then you might get some sympathy (perhaps?), some understanding, some forgiveness at least for putting every penny earned and borrowed toward something completely useless and impractical, an art project with no end in sight. And when year after year goes by with no interest or dividend paid on your investment, your “ridiculous” art, and when the only art dealer to visit your studio in 15 years tells you, “You’re not a very good painter; you’re not,” and “You shouldn’t have done it like that,” and when your wife, for great reason, is tired of lending you money for “one more idea” because the last one was to send extravagant floral arrangements to the few dealers and collectors you wrote down on a wish list long ago, hoping for some sort of response, a morsel, and the only one received was a call from the director of the Rubell Family Collection in Miami who asked, “Why are you stalking Mera Rubell?” and when not a single fucking painting or print is sold in over a year, and after spending all those other fucking years in defense of your ideas, your vision, however blurry, your quest for immortality that you find yourself feeling washed-out, tired, exhausted from verbal expression in defending your title as artist. So you stop trying to convey your art in words (spoken or written), and hold tightly to the glee you feel upon looking at the five images requested and before pressing “send” that somebody in the art world is now taking note.

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