Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Artist's Fragile Ego




My original post was about something I've gotten over now - but I received a great comment from Christopher Rico that I've decided to post instead.

This is such a raw post because everyone who does this feels that fragility at one time or another. The slights, the exclusion, the rejection; these things are part of it. My words are inadequate, except to say that your work is solid and your feelings are normal and human. NYC was a glorious success, as I'm certain Miami will be as well. If you had the opportunity to see your work in a new light, then that is something to be thankful for, no matter what kind of light shone on it.

“There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique, and if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium; and be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how it compares with other expression. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. No artist is pleased. There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is on a queer, divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.”

-Martha Graham
November 16, 2009 5:27 AM

2 comments:

Rico said...

Robert,

This is such a raw post because everyone who does this feels that fragility at one time or another. The slights, the exclusion, the rejection; these things are part of it. My words are inadequate, except to say that your work is solid and your feelings are normal and human. NYC was a glorious success, as I'm certain Miami will be as well. If you had the opportunity to see your work in a new light, then that is something to be thankful for, no matter what kind of light shone on it.

“There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique, and if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium; and be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how it compares with other expression. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. No artist is pleased. There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is on a queer, divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.”

-Martha Graham

Leslie Avon Miller said...

Yes.