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July 20, 2012 / thomcaraway

7.2 is en route

With delivery scheduled for Monday, here’s another look into the coming issue.

Image

Cover art by Emelie Anskog

Artist’s statement by Emelie Ånskog

How I breathe

I was in London and ran across a street with an old lady. There were many people standing on the sidewalk at the white broad lines of the pedestrian crossing, but it was just me and the old lady who ran over to the other side. We reached the other side just before a car drove past us. The old lady looked at me with mischievous eyes, lit up and said: “We took the chance! That’s life! It’s full of chances.” The courage to dare and not to resist is stronger than my fear. To affirm even if I sometimes tremble. Not deny and close myself. But it is painful sometimes, and it is often an uphill journey. The journey is beautiful and exciting, safe, yet chaotic.

In the short story “Jonas or the Artist at Work” by Albert Camus, the artist dies and his best friend finds his last canvas. It is totally empty except for a word in the middle, unclearly written in small letters. Is it the word solitaire? Solitary, alone, someone who preserves the necessary peace of mind and listens to his own innermost self. Or is it the word solidaire? Solidarity, community responsibility, commitment. 

These two opposites are both necessary when I do something of importance. Actively select. Actively deselect. I become myself through my choices and my commitment. I have a responsibility called civil courage— the individual’s courage to have his own opinion. The ability to stand up for his own values. The word courage means literally ‘big heart.’ 

To fight against conformism, apathy, materialism and exploitation, I transform conflict into constructiveness. I live and create simply because I am aware of both boundary and depth. The kind of depth that I experience in my own being when I wrestle with my world and shape it. To listen to my own inner being, peace of mind is necessary. Fresh air to the soul. If I underestimate that importance, I rush off and forget my feelings. I need to establish my heart in what I do. I need to open my eyes before I can take art to my heart and I need to open my heart before I can observe art. It is about seeing. And being a co-creator. When I am curious as a child and open-minded, then I have confidence in my own ability. I can feel the wonder and gratitude in being alive and I want to have the courage to join the surprising journey and daring adventures.

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