Good Morning Screaming Phlegmatic(s),
I read an article about a Russian artist named Pyotr Pavlensky who nailed his scrotum to Red Square to make a point. He also cut off an ear lobe reminiscent of our boy Van Gogh. His beef had to do with Moscow authorities using ‘Forensic Psychology’ to besmirch or even remove local dissidents to hospitals that house the insane. As shameful as that is, I can’t help but cringe at the thought of being drug away naked; leaving a significant part of my nut sack still nailed to the ground. That had to be painful!
I suspect Mr. Pavlensky is a passionate man who has seen a number of his friends be arrested only to be transferred to a ‘Cotton Box’ indefinitely. When you consider the above along with suicide bombers, wanna be “Martyrs” looking for virgins, and blowing up ancient antiquities there’s much to be concerned about.
I wondered aloud while at ‘Curmudgeon Corner’ how our lives would change if we struggled to find enough food, clothing, and shelter to sustain us? There’d be little time and energy left to be creative! It was immediately pointed out my question was answered some time ago by Abraham Maslow’s ‘hierarchy of needs.’ Using a pyramid to illustrate, he says those struggling with the basic needs of life are at the bottom level. One can’t progress to the next level until he/she has secured the basic needs to sustain life. By contrast, those at the very top level have achieved ‘Self-Actualization.’ I think most of us reside within the mid-levels which may explain why my art suffers.
Being an artist usually comes with expectations. I’m inclined to believe recognition is the strongest motivator but somewhere in the depths of our collective souls we’d also like to see money for said recognition. But you have to ask yourself…how impassioned and intense are you about your work? Most of us were told early on in our lives that hard work and dedication equals success. I’ve found this to be generally true but have personally failed miserably–even after being relentless on a project. It’s clear to me working hard is a factor but only one of many keeping us from “Self-Actualization.”
Oscar Wilde once said, Art is the most intense mode of individualism that the world has known…
Being a true artist involves being wrapped up in oneself and precludes selflessness. While liberating to some degree it also becomes evident to friends and family members–but is the price an artist must be willing to pay.
So if Mr. Pavlensky’s actions on Red Square mean anything to the two or three of you still reading this banal act of desperation, we all must be prepared to nail our genitals to the wall!