“Dear Young Artist,
Thank you for your letter and your insightful questions. I’ve been thinking about it for for days because I would like to answer you carefully and sincerely.
First, I would like to emphasize that I am on one path that works for me and that there are an infinite number of paths you are free to choose to take. Second, I would also like to emphasize that asking the right questions is more important than finding the right answers. That being said, I will try to give you answers that wil make you ask more questions! Let’s see:
The world is just the world and it is not trying to push you into anything. You may not have a choice about the events around you but you always have a choice about how you perceive things and how things affect you, Your passion is your responsibility. You have to nourish it and feed it. Nobody can touch your passion but you.
Also, yes, it is possible and essential to maintain passion and be realistic. We are here on earth to live a material existence as an expression of our spirit and soul. Art is one of the ways we play with materials. It is important to be respectful of the physical process of art, including the process of acquiring the physical material. It is important to respect the exchange that is required. It is important to respect our own need for physical sustenance to maintain life, to maintain health, to maintain inspiration and passion.
It is possible and very very essential that you maintain your integrity and freedom as an artist participating in the “art world” (or in any world! Haha! ) . This is the most important part of the work. Again, integrity and freedom (of thought) is your responsibility as an artist (and as a human being) and it does not depend on anyone else. The “art world” is a concept. An illusion. It will affect you if you believe in it. The system is real and it is part of the process, part of the path. It is also part of your design challenge. I think that your 20’s should be devoted to imagining the possibilities and exploring the ones that you are drawn to. This is also part of art. Art and life are inseparable. Imagine. Explore. Your 30’s will be about mastering you skill. To bring your skill to the farthest level. Your 40’s will be about purpose. You will understand this more later on. Experience will teach you so get lots of experience.
“Career” is also an illusion. Work is real. There is only the work of creating art and the work of sending the art out into the world. Both of these aspects are your responsibility.
Creating art- this involves life experience and inner work and listening and vision and courage and exploration and risk and exploration and failure and exploration and fulfillment. This involves the physical manifestation of a meaningful vision.
Sending your work out there- we do what we do so the work may speak. The process of creating is ours but the receiving of what is created belongs to the world. There are systems in place that facilitate the work of sending your art out into the world but you are also free to make your own way. The system is changing because of technology and the way art is distributed into the world. You are free to explore these new paths. There are risks involved in all the paths. But you are at the age when you have to explore. You can make mistakes and get up again. You are an artist and courage is your weapon. Be courageous and imaginative also in the finding ways to send your work out into the world.
Now, this last bit is a strange but very important suggestion. There are concepts that, culturally, we see as “noble”. But some turn out as conceptual blocks that prevent our mind from stretching and expanding. It is part of the work of an artist to question concepts, even and especially, when it is a common belief. This is the only way we can expand consciousness and evolve. For example: the concept of po and opo. I am not saying you should stop using these words. That is not my place to even suggest something like that. I am saying, look into this and other concepts and what they do to the mind of a human being, to the mind of a large group of people. If you look inside it, maybe when you say the words again it will be with a different sincerity, a different feeling, a different light.
I hope this helps but more importantly, I hope I have raised more questions in you!
Thank you. It was good for me to think about these things too.
Sincerely and happily,
| Chati Coronel | November 15, 2015 | 2:19PM