The past year has been filled with disturbing revelations; I have seen friends battling with the reality of themselves, discovering themselves in the burning spotlight of isolation, friends who have discovered the truth of their relationships to others in dark times;
To say that the majority have been confronted by the baring of their illusions would be an understatement.
To say that these times have exposed the greater need for human compassion, both for the self and for others, would also be an understatement.
With our vulnerabilities, needs and desires laid bare before us, our self-limiting paradigms and our self-criticisms, our inner children hungry and starved for human connection, we have all had a relative common ground in one aspect - the fragile nature of humanity.
That divided, we are less than the sum of our parts, befuddled and confounded by our very existence, reaching out for answer while those internal pleas go unnoticed; united, we are confirmed, we are real again, and not some blind mute, made of nothing but the vagaries of our own thoughts and feelings.
It was a different experience for every person, but the culminating effect was the same - the recognition of the value of human life, and by what means it is valued, where and how and who and why it matters.
On the 7th of March, 2021, I'm participating in the Recover Art and Fashion Show, an event for the Upstream Festival, organised by the Wodonga City Council. Along with fellow artistSteve Stewart, and a number of local artists and designers, the aim is to create an event that allows the human element to be present again - for nowhere in human existence is there a more prevalent measure of our connection to each other than in the arts. Events Creator Bernadette Torresan and her team atGO Local Media Group, have been working hard to re-ignite that cultural unity, and bring something to the community that provides relief, relationship, and recovery, to the society's soul.
I'm a long-standing believer in the idea that art brings people together; and never has it been more necessary for people to find common bonds beyond the constraints and constrictions of hardship and grief, loneliness and bereavement, and quite honestly, nothing does that quite so well and so efficiently as the exposure to art, and artistic endeavour.
Artists have a unique responsibility in the world as the caretakers of the human soul, and what we create, what we imagine and what we manifest into being, has the power to bring our world into focus. Through culture, through creativity, through vision, we have the privilege of uniting our societies and challenging the dark times, through our work.
I don't think that I've ever been more proud to be an artist. People are now awake to the things that they can discover in art, the depth, the substance, the profound and the sacred, merely due to its absence in life during these times. The wow factor has failed to be enough - feeding the spirit has come to be far more valuable. And I'm putting my hand up for that job.
More things on the horizon for zeddess arts, as the year gets going, and more news and art to come. In the meantime, as always,