Podcast – Episode 11: A Love Letter to the Arts
It’s been an angry week for the Arts. I felt pushed to change up my schedule and share a few thoughts on this anger and uproar. Yes, it’s very visible in the UK, but it’s shared by a lot of artists and creators around the world.
During the lockown, and throughout this pandemic, the Arts have been there to provide us all with a distraction, with escapism and feel good moments.
It’s also threatened artists of all disciplines and abilities. Because despite its cathartic and healing presence, we are not seen or supported enough.
But when the world is dark, music, paintings & all forms of creations brighten our day. Why does it feel like we’ve been abandonned?
Why does it feel that the preconceived judgments artists have been faced with for centuries are thrown in our faces even more today?
All the arts have ever done has been support humans, play with minds and materials. Why are we not seen truly for what we bring?
It’s not only about the 1 or 2% that you see on billboards, that makes it big. It’s about all of us, creators of all realms.
It all started with a quizz &
Below, you’ll find the advert that re-ignited the anger of the past week, and scrolling
further down this article, you will also find a video of the photographer, KrysAlex, telling you the real story behind this photograph, and the ballerina in the picture: Desiree, a young african-dancer, who just graduated high school.
In the full version of the picture, which I descibed in the episode prior to the explanatory video being released, you also see her instructor, mirroring this preparation posture.
It’s a beautiful shot, showcasing two powerful women, two powerful artists.
Ballet is an artform that didn’t used to be accessible to all men and women.
Which is also why I find this picture so empowering and strong.
It takes strength and bravery to be an artist.
It takes courage to embark on a creative adventure, and even more so on a creative profession. Because in the eyes of too many still, these job that creatives worked towards or trained for, still aren’t considered viable careers.
Cue the side comments, the “it will always be a hobby”, “you will need a proper job”, or even the “you won’t be able to have a balanced lifestyle or a family”.
A few days before this advert sent the arts industry abalze, the government had shared their new questionnaire to help you figure out the industry or work you could retrain for… I’ve linked the quizz to everyone right here for your entertainement.
In this week’s episode I reveal to you some of the options I got presented with… ranging from Soldier to Kennel Worker. Giving me a range of options, but no insight as to how much it would cost me to retrain as one of those.
This is an example of the type of discourse artists have to face: being pushed in a direction that’s not where the are their happiest, where they don’t necessarily feel like they can express themselves.
It diminishes the work and skills they’ve gathered. Tells them that ultimately, it was all well and good but time to join the ranks.
Why? Do we not need art? Do we not need entertainment and escapism? Do we not need music, dance, poetry and theatre? Do colours and shape only belong to other industries that offer a form of creativity, but not to all realms of the Art?
That is why I think it takes strength to say “I’m an artist” even if by society’s standard it shouldn’t apply to you because you’re not part of that visible 1 or 2% that “makes it big”.
No matter what, we, artists and creators of all disciplines need to speak our truths and embody our beliefs with pride.
Voir cette publication sur Instagram
@KrysAlex the photographer of the viral ballerina photo used by the UK Government ‘Rethink. Reskill. Reboot’ ad, gives her first statement • Please help support @VibezInMotion and #Desiree • Special thanks to videographer @ProwlaMan • #Fatima #SaveTheArts #UK • #TheArtShare
Preparing this episode, embracing my own belief in the Strength and Courage that make Artists, these words of Emily Brontë came to me.
No Coward soul is mine
No trembler in the world’s storm-troubled sphere
I see Heaven’s glories shine
And Faith shines eauql arming me from Fear
O God within my breast
Almighty ever-present Deity
Life, that in me hast rest,
As I Undying Life, have power in Thee
Vain are the thousand creeds
That move men’s hearts, unutterably vain,
Worthless as withered weeds
Or idlest froth amid the boundless main
To waken doubt in one
Holding so fast by thy infinity
So surely anchored on
The steadfast rock of Immortality.
With wide-embracing love
Thy spirit animates eternal years
Pervades and broods above,
Changes, sustains, dissolves, creates and rears
Though earth and moon were gone
And suns and universes ceased to be
And Thou were left alone
Every Existence would exist in thee
There is not room for Death
Not atom that his might could render void
Since thou art Being and Breath
And what thou art may never be destroyed.
And what thou art may never be
Save the Arts.
Let me know what you thought of Episode 11. I’ll speak to you very soon.
Much love, Ségolène xx