Thank you to everyone who came out to Drea Jay's opening reception for Art Never Will Break Your Heart! Leading up to the show, the gallery flooded! Thanks to the generous donation of a giant shopvac (renamed blow-bot 5000) , we were able to pull out over 200 gallons of water in time to dry out the floor for the show.
This existence is heartbreak. There is beauty in this. When life is tearing us down, kicked to the curb, covered in mud, aching and sore, not knowing who to trust or where to go, we are at our most vulnerable. This moment is vulnerable because we are our most authentic selves on display for the world to see, to judge, to reject, to ridicule.
In these broken moments, we also can be renewed. A hug, a flower, a bird song, a ray of sunshine warming our face, a smile, a gentle hand guiding us, all these are felt most when we are entangled in the pain of life. The little moments are what lift us up.
Art – creation and appreciation – has been the constant beacon for me in these moments I’ve been broken. When I’ve been completely alone, about to kill myself, ready to end it all, I always push myself to paint, draw, or write first before deciding to end it. Humans fail us, life fails us, we fail us, the creative spirit is infallible.
I have every reason to end my life. I really shouldn’t be alive. I was sold as a child for sex by a drug addict mother. My father never wanted me. I’ve struggled my whole life for any sort of stability, for any companion, friend, or community that truly understands me. I realized though a few years back, I won’t find that until I truly understand myself.
Again art, unfailing, is a freedom in this malicious society to find my true voice. As I started to find it, life threw another wrench in my joy. Through the creation of these pieces, my right elbow and wrist started to give out. A few of these paintings are finished with my left hand. I always tell everyone I truly believe everyone is an artist. I had to prove it to myself by teaching my left hand what my right side has mastered. This process is still underway and extremely painful and frustrating. I have marked each work with what hand completed it.
Knight in Black Armor
Oil on Canvas
Knight in Black Armor is inspired by someone dear to me. He is the bravest, kindest, strongest man I have ever known. I have witnessed him fight internal and external battles with grace and courage. This is 4.5 foot by 4.5 foot and it’s still not large enough to encompass this man’s heart.
This was painting while he was in extreme pain. Watching a loved one in pain is heartbreaking. Here is a poem written during the same period:
To see your loved one in pain
That can’t stop
That keeps them up at night
The writing in agony
The screams and shakes
The eyes glazing over
Pleading to the universe for relief
The resentment, then the fury
You swallow until you’re numb at
Those who hurt them
To the point they word a nerve down
Until you’re disillusioned at
The medication that seemingly stops working
The medical field that forgets
The ERs that rejects them
Only be sick 9-5 Mon – Fri
To go to the only clinic
That treats us like a human
Until you feel absolutely inadequate
Because even your usually soothing touch
Only aggravates them
Even your presence stresses them
They don’t want to subject you
To any of this
So they push further away
The overwhelming wish to hold them
And comfort them
To be able to do anything to take it away
The countless hours searching
The internet for any sort of relief
None of this
Not even one part of it
Is even pleasure
For the most heinous sadist
In a last ditch effort
You take the blame
Thinking if you caused it
Then you can stop it
The masochists way
Somehow if you
Cast spells enough
Your will can magically wash it away
Just so they can live again
And at the end of the day
When you’re exhausted
And feel you can’t go on
From all the choirs and work and worry
That all this too much for one person
To carry, to hold, to even witness
You look over at them
There isn’t one but two
All this is an insignificant portion
To what they are going through
Oil on Canvas
Painted over a few months of intense body massage work with my Master, it encompasses the chaos that is purging trauma from the body. BDSM is not officially recognized as therapy for those who suffer from trauma, primarily sexual. However, I’ve engaged in it my whole adult life to overcome sexual traumas. This painting is a testament to the healing that can be had and the beauty of this painful process. Furthermore, it is a homage to the vital role my Master played in my healing process.