I started the morning wanting to write about self-confidence and art. You know, having certainty in one’s art practice–one’s place in the art world and all that.
I’ll be honest; this is a tremendously loaded subject for me. I have a lot of confidence in certain aspects of my art and lack tons within others. Areas that address the art world at large are, without saying, the most difficult. Whereas knowing what art to make always comes easy for me.
What started me along this vein was reading a Hyperallergic article written by Paddy Johnson. I once followed Paddy’s blog from back in the day, and she’s always been an insightful writer. This morning’s article about feeling kinda invisible in a seemingly “successful” artist’s landscape, especially during the Miami fair week, was very encouraging. But one particularly profound thing she said was this:
“In truth, a sustainable practice can include goals other than fame and fortune. The path toward achieving them will look different for everyone — but you’ll know you’re on it when you no longer feel burdened by what other people are doing.”
Reading that was an ah-ha moment. I realized how important it is to keep that at the forefront of my mind. It’s probably the single most key to confidence across the board. It’s always about the work itself. Don’t let anyone persuade you differently.
This all got me thinking about confidence in a general sense. It’s been mixing with all the reeling feelings I’ve been having lately, as there’s been some personal shit I’ve been dealing with. The solution to the recent problems, for the most part, was all about confidence.
I talked about boundaries before. But, to put in boundaries successfully, you need a bit of confidence.
Regarding boundaries, when I think about the people I have the most challenging time with, they are the same people who have torn down my confidence. They certainly had a big hand in it if they weren’t wholly to blame.
Then, later this morning, I coincidentally came across this mind-altering opinion piece on CNN by Nicole Hemmer about gaslighting. Jesus, did this ever hit me in the gut. Seriously, everyone should read this because it’s fucking necessary. There’s a lot of stuff in there that I needed to be reminded of, plus a shit ton more I didn’t even know, like the statistics on mass shooters and their connections with domestic violence.
I especially liked how the #MeToo movement is highlighted and how many people have felt that it’s gone “too far.” It struck such a huge chord. It’s probably because I’ve been fixated on the Masterson Trial over the last few weeks. Yesterday, the jury couldn’t make a unanimous decision (on all three charges), so the judge declared a mistrial.
The biggest bummer doesn’t end there. The splits were heavily in favor of acquitting him. There were a lot of problems with the trial, as only a limited amount of Scientology’s church policies were allowed disclosure. The jury didn’t get the full picture of the cover-up, the harassment, or why the victims couldn’t report it to the police at the time. They were working off partial information. And Scientology conveniently loses documentation when necessary for “enemies” of the church or one of their members.
Will there be a retrial? That depends if the prosecution can get their ducks in line. I would guess not. Scientology usually wins in these situations, and so do misogynists.
So, art, confidence, boundaries, gaslighting, mass shootings, rape trials, and Scientology. How’s that for a blog post that’s all over the map?