Creating connections through the arts and across cultures

My Life Slogan: “Autonomy with Connection”—In the Arts

What I seek in my life is "autonomy with connection." What does that mean? To be fully myself, but in the context of community. To have a balance of time by myself, and time to connect with others. To me, this is the quest of the artist. To create anything, there is always a period of time when the creator must be alone. Then, there is another stage when the creation goes out into the community and a collaboration begins.

I experience this contrast as a writer. When I write, I need time alone (or at least quiet time) to concentrate and bring ideas and words home on the page. I might seek out a writing buddy (rather than a writing group), but the act of writing happens alone. Later, in promoting the work I venture out to speak and present workshops, and celebrate the completion of the work with friends.

I experience this contrast as a visual artist. The physical work made in the studio is created alone, and then placed publically in a clean space (outside or inside) to be enjoyed by a community of viewers, and celebrated in an opening. How apt is that phrase, "art opening"?

I experience this contrast in my performances as storyteller, actress, comedienne, and musician. The material is always practiced in private and sometimes also created in private. Then, there are group practices...followed by group performances. Theater and orchestra by definition are more public, but still involve private time before joining in public to perfom for the community.

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3 Responses »

  1. "Autonomy with connection" snaps in place the tension between the individual and the group. Different cultures feel this identity and balance differently. I think you're right that people practicing in the arts must learn to travel back and forth between the solitary and social more often.

  2. Been meaning to tell you that I'm impressed the way you keep your blogsite updated. It's cool the way you use it.

  3. I can relate to this. My daughter & I both paint, & we've shared an art exhibition, & she plays in an orchestra, but learnt violin alone for several years beforehand. I prefer to paint completely alone, but one year I met weekly with a painting buddy, while we prepared for our joint exhibition.

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