I am reading a book titled, "The Demon and the Angel". It's written by Edward Hirsch and it takes the reader into the very depths of the creative process and explores the mysterious source that impels the artist to follow a vision that becomes a work of art.
It's a fascinating read that delves into the minds of poets, dancers, writers, musicians and painters and the force that is called duende. The definition of duende is a spirit or demon as well as passion, authenticity and a heightened state of emotion. Duende is something you feel and something that can be exchanged from the artist to the audience. It's that moment of connection that can leave the artist and/or the audience with goose bumps. It's a feeling that something very special is happening in that moment.
Famous authors and artists have commented on how they created their art while in a state of mind that is somewhere between a dream and wakefulness. It's right on the cusp of darkness of the subconscious, leaving conscious thought behind. The artist becomes the vehicle for the subconscious to make its entrance. It's that moment when the artist forgets about time, place and themselves while being completely engulfed in that sacred place we call "the zone".
I am truly enjoying this book and it inspires me to allow myself to stop the random thoughts and just let it all go to see what happens. Creative impulse can be a beautiful thing. It reveals things that are usually denied or forgotten. Once we are face to face with something we have created without restrictions and daily interference, it results in truth being revealed.
That truth is the key in making those goose bump connections with others. It speaks on a deeper level as a great conversation does. It doesn't float lightly through the air like usual pleasantries and disappear. It dives down deep into the heart and psyche. It lingers and continues to reveal itself.
I often talk about how each time I think I am finished with a piece that I ask myself if I am being honest. Is this me and have I dug down deep enough to reveal what I wanted to reveal? If I am unsure or if I know it's not quite there, it sits for awhile until I am ready to go in again and finish.
I felt compelled to return to my Abandoned Memory series this past week. I re-worked this image and when I believed it was finished, I took a hard look at it and immediately knew this was as honest as I could possibly be. These abandoned memories are mine. A little girl is holding on to hope and dreams while the past fades behind her. I had not planned on this happening. I let that force, duende, guide me as the day and evening disappeared around me without being consciously aware. That is the force that compels me to continue to create and allow the subconscious to reveal itself.
"Abandoned Memories #5" is available.