RE: artist

From: ef (
Date: Sun May 27 2001 - 11:36:10 PDT

>How do you know when you have 'become' an artist?

good question. i don't know how it is to everyone else. i only know
how it is for me. me, i never "became", i just was. i mean, i was
never anything else. it's the only time i ever felt connected to, i
dunno, life. directly.

it first happened when i was 7. piano lessons... learned a little
brahms piece, couldn't stop playing it. i felt it. piano teacher told
my parnets that they must send me to the conservatory, that she had
never come across a 7yr old who... felt it. but my mother woldn't,
said i was too young. well, then we left hungary and i could never
have a piano again. so then i started drawing, it just happened. the
writing thing happened at 29 or so, i think that was the point when
english became direct. i think, before, i had been translating from
hungarian, in my brain.

but i never became, as i said. it just always was, i made things. and
it was all totally unrelated to what was around me, i mean, who i was
hanging out with. making things made time stand still, the only way i
would stop, i dunno, filtering.

>Is this an identity issue
>or one of techincal skill? What are the elements that make some identity
>issues (dem/repub/green) more acceptably fluid than others (gay/straight).
>It can't only be emotional investment or self-declaration.

dunno, none of the above, for me. it's not like it made me part of
some kind of a societal construct.

but i know people for whom it is like you say, above. they always
hang out with other artists. and have ambitions i do not share.
cannot share. not that i haven't tried, to have ambitions. i mean,
they seem the right thing to have. occasional recognition is kinda
pleasant. it validates one, it makes one matter, you know, out there.
maybe that's a vanity thing. also, a bit of financial security would
be nice.

but it doesn't work for me, when i have had that i have destroyed it.
every time. advertenly or inadvertently. i guess it made me feel
dishonest, to be like that. i seem to have some weird standards of, i
dunno, haha, purity. cause in the end, ambition has nothing to do
with why i make things. i make things cause i seem to have to make
things. that is, i seem driven to do so.

i asked steve, cause he says he gave it up, you know, for love and
computergeekdom. i kinda admire being able to do that. but i wonder
if he misses it.

i asked him cause sometimes i get scared. and sometimes i really
don't like my poverty and this romania thing makes resources matter.
i could do an awful lot more if i had more. the baby is back in the
hospital, suffering from malnutrition. i wish i had a lot of money so
i could go back to romania and do some things that need to be done.
you know, like bring food.

yet i can't stop being and artist and i can't stop making art. i
can't stop being what i never became.

do you think art is self-indulgence?


>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: canela []
>> Sent: Saturday, May 26, 2001 10:54 PM
>> To:
>> Subject: Re: artist
>> > steve... why exactly aren't you an artist anymore?
>> >
>> > -e
>> Can you just stop being an artist? Or do you simply cease to make art?
>> ~ Canela

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