Thursday, February 18, 2010

"Courage and Acceptance"

"Some people confuse acceptance with apathy, but there's all the difference in the world. Apathy fails to distinguish between what can and what cannot be helped; acceptance makes that distinction. Apathy paralyzes the will-to-action; acceptance frees it by relieving it of impossible burdens."
Arthur Gordon

I'm not sure that I am able to speak directly to issues of courage and acceptance. What I can do is write a bit about my process of making art. Or of living. The boundaries get blurred in the distinction.

It's a side door approach to the topic. But then, many riches often dwell in the periphery .
As a young man, I aspired to paint a masterpiece, supposing that I, along with the painting, would obtain some historical significance in the completion. And I wasn't overly concerned about the painting's success, if you catch my drift. I became hobbled by the desire, and wandered about in what (at the time) I considered to be an aimless way.

Now I have come to understand that I was gathering information and experience. Eventually, I learned that I had to let go of that adolescent drive before I could even begin to implement that material into what I make as art.
So what does that mean? It means that I have to relinquish control during the process of the making. Which is funny, because my sense of control is primarily illusory. This is not to say that I throw up my hands and submit to some other controlling agency. I respond to beckoning, but most often rail at being lead.
What I prefer is dialogue. Exchange.
Acceptance, then, becomes an active performance of engagement. It calls out for investment. Once a situation or a canvas, an interaction or an armature has been recognized, then acceptance can format itself as a type of surrender into the moment. This is when I become available to participate in the marvelous, especially when the 'conversation' steps beyond the limitations of my preconceived notions.

That participation is a choice.
And if that has anything to do with courage, I'll accept that.

1. "Water Labyrinth #11"© 2010
Watercolor on paper

2. "Towards Sheryl's House - 7:30 AM"© 2010
Watercolor on paper

Paintings by Tom Schulz

Press Arrow to Play Video.

"Courage to Accept"© 2010
Video Sketch
From "The Systemic Amazement Factorial"©

"The Art of acceptance is the art of making someone who has just done you a small favor wish that he might have done you a greater one."

Martin Luther King, Jr.



Mary said...

Luminous painting. Embryonic Journey. Next request: patience...

Roz said...

Grace is usually a difficult concept for me to get, but in this context, it makes much more sense.

donna said...

I really liked the video and seeing the hands of an artist actually in the process of creating a product. Cool!