|Judith Beheading Holofernes after Caravaggio |
Composition Life Drawing with Mark E Merrill
Main Street Museum
Good Morning Amerikkka. An yes, that’s uncomfortable. Is it not? The verbiage itself “Amerikkka” is borrowed from a title of a poem by the much beloved poet August Bleed. I’ve use this nomenclature often in titles of my artworks, but it wasn’t until my friend, and social activist, Olivia Lapierre, inquired if I had ever considered the pain using such a title might inflict upon individuals—that I really even really questioned why, how and to whom such pain was being directed, as my assumption was, I believed it to be obvious. It's a tear a slight against the system. It names the thing itself to be resisted. It's a rage of contempt and irony against the machine. That is, anyways, my belief.
Belief, of course is always a passive non-action, and why do I say this? Because I believe it is... our belief or belief systems are a hodgepodge of values, experience, privileges and lack thereof, hopes, fears, dreams, desires, and wishes—who we are, the core of being, it is the truth in which we walk.
Belief, I believe, is always a passive non-action, and why do I say this? Lol, because I believe it is... any belief or belief system is a hodgepodge of personal values, experience, economic privilege (or lack thereof), hopes, fears and... dreams. And where are we without our dreams? What we actively incorporate into this belief system is dogma.
The enfircable guidelines of both spoken and unspoken memes that are responsible for things like say, a Starbucks Employee calling 911 on and individual whose skin color was not there own, and a nation divided on lines of the guilty and fearful with backstepping and retroactive racial bias band-aid trainings, and the even more insidious those whose response was the absence of.
In another corner of the same dilemma there is the active compliance of this dysfunction. I just spent the past several hours in a non-conversation with support@monday Monday.com is a flashy bling-bling like visual organizational tool that may have shown-up somewhere on your Advo-sphere. And I’ve been really thinking this is exactly the thingamajig that I could really use at this particularly moment of upheaval in my life. Yet, their advertising is somewhat deceptive. Signing up for a "free account" is a bit of a stretch, don't ya think fellas? I’m not sure how many of you realize this, but I've been without a paycheck since 2008 (which exception of a short part-time 6 month stint) to immerse myself in this experiment of the Main Street Museum and that opportunity to do so is so rare. So when what I thought was advertised as a free account turned into an "expired trial account" I got really pissy fast (see current blog post). And ya, I'm being overly harsh on these guys, but it symbolizes my struggle, the larger struggle i see that stifles innovation––let's call it what it is––capitalist exclusionary dogma.
The point is this. Our system is broken. Our lives are devalued. Our nation is divided. Our government is corrupt. Our corporations are greedy—and we are witness to it all.
By yourself you will accomplish nothing, yet you change everything.
So to answer Olivia's question pain belongs to those individuals who cling to fear as a tool of manipulation. Pain belongs to those individuals whose fear stifles innovation. Pain belongs to those individuals who choose not to act or choose not to choose because the choice is to hard, pain belongs to all of us who do not resist, and refuse to inspire. innovate, and adapt.