State of Affairs
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold
-Yeats, “The Second Coming”
According to Collins Dictionary, state of affairs means the general situation and circumstances connected with someone or something. For the last eight months, the general situation surrounding my place of creation, artistic flair, and business has been in limbo. I am not alone in this state of affairs, but for the purpose of what I’m expressing here, I am only speaking for myself.
Let me explain what I mean by limbo. I’ll try to do this quickly since many of you are already familiar with this situation. I rent a studio from the Arts Council of Wayne County. In August, we learned that the ACWC’s lease was not being renewed on the building. Two extensions later, we were given until the end of May. Now it is two months away until this final lease extension is up. There is no new location which has been finalized. Of course, there’s been buildings looked at, but nothing to date that has been legally finalized. In addition to the paper side of things, once a building has been decided upon, there’s the renovating and all it entails such as inspections, acquiring permits, as well as acquiring the needed materials to upfit any building to the needs of ACWC. In our current climate, thanks to Covid, it’s not so much a snap of the fingers to get all that you need to make things happen. I’m just being realistic. Two months away from the move out. How long, really though, before things are ready?
This writing is not to complain even though it surely must look that way. My intention is to explain the effect on my artistic process and perhaps a little of my day to day. I’ll try to keep it as brief as possible.
August- The day after receiving the news. At this time, we had to be out by the end of August.
Expressed the turmoil which was being experienced both internally and externally into a piece of work titled Peace, Be Still.
September and October- The next few months, I moved into some small works that really didn’t require much feeling other than being something pretty. Don’t get me wrong, beauty is very important and I don’t mean to downplay it. Being productive has its own benefits such as taking your mind off of things. Then again, when creating by rote (doing something without thinking about it), it does clear the way to ponder or obsess about more pressing matters.
November- Precious time away with family and dear friends, but the current situation is still there in the back of the mind.
What an awesome blessing in the midst of turmoil to be accepted into a new gallery! God is still in the center.
December- The busyness and lightheartedness of Christmas. Additionally, at this time some information concerning our relocation had finally been divulged to the studio artists.
Christmas = Joy (Thank you Jesus!)
January- It was interesting to say the least. The offices and half of the studios lost heat back in December, but it seems like it was really being felt in January. I wonder why…maybe because January can be one of the coldest months of the year.
Has the heat been fixed? No.
I was one of the lucky ones. With the exception of a handful of days, I didn’t lose heat in my studio. Luckily, temperatures in North Carolina vary moment to moment. Some say we can have all four seasons in a day. This means, however, even in the spring, we can still have a day that feels like winter. Just two days ago, it was 59 degrees in the studio when I arrived. If there was any rhyme or reason to when the heat works or doesn’t work, it would certainly make planning a lot easier, not to mention saving on the gas it takes to go to my studio only to find that it’s too cold to work.
February- I need to send out a newsletter and update my website. I am unmotivated. What do I have to say? Remember the piece titled Peace, Be Still? It earned an honorable mention in the Water and Sky show at Carolina Artist Gallery in Morehead City and I finally started work on a piece that represents something close to my heart- the importance of community and connection.
Time away with my honey. He and doing things together like this is always a strong runner up in things of importance. What! You may say. Yes, I said runner up. God is always number 1.
March- I need to send out a newsletter and update my website. I am unmotivated. What do I have to say? I played and explored with something new which then led to taking what I found through exploration into bigger pieces.
Today, March 31st- I need to send out a newsletter and update my website. What do I have to say? I actually have something to say. My opening paragraphs explain the current situation and mood; although, I am reminded that when things are falling apart and the center is not holding that there is one true center. God. He is already at the end of my current state of affairs. He knows the outcome. He’s already there.
When I look over the last eight months, yes, it’s been quite a rollercoaster. I am very tired of the unknowing. For the longest time, I thought there was no sense of urgency as well as the appearance of being lackadaisical. I chose the word appearance because I only have had a very small part of the picture and appearances can be deceiving after all.
Bottom line, stay the course and keep the faith. In between all the falling apart, keep creating whether it’s from a place of deep feeling, creating by rote, or creating for the sake of creating. Just keep creating.
I attended a board meeting tonight, so my picture is a little larger. What did I learn? It's not so much about what I thought I was perceiving. Instead, there's been a definite a lack of communication and perhaps making assumptions. Although there's still an uncertainty, hopefully, a new line of communication has opened and questions will be asked in stead of making assumptions.
In closing, I hope and pray I will have some news to share with you sometime in the near future. . . .
I'm an artist working in acrylic and mixed media. I love looking for the seen and the unseen by exploring matters of the heart. My one of a kind works of art are in the style of expressionism, representational art, and inspirational art. All of my works of art share in the qualities of redemptive art.
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