Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The Monster Within

Every so often I succumb to a sickening dread that I am, somehow, not succeeding as an artist, despite the increased financial rewards and celebrity I have gained over the past 18 months or so.

It sneaks up on me when I read about another artist, usually someone I know, of a similar age to me, who has been included in a prestigious museum show or awarded a generous grant. I can't help wondering what they're doing that I'm not and why whatever it is has drawn such attention. Of course, everything that should assure me of my own accomplishments – the sold-out shows, the backlog of commissions, the critical acclaim – recede from view and pretty soon I find myself wallowing in irrational self-negation.
At least there's an upside. These episodes don't last long and afterwards, I drive myself to work even harder, to think more deeply and with more complexity about what I am doing. As odd it might sound my art improves as a result of these flashes of inadequacy and envy, even if I'm left somewhat ashamed by them.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Oh Haze, I have been raising a kid for the past decade,having to maintain trans-Tasman family relations, part time work, while painting, exhibiting and selling (in a minor fashion), keeping a balance between good parenting and keeping dreams alive. I am about to start classes 3 nights a week, as well as commissions and exhibition work...if i spend too much time comparing myself to you i would not get up in the morning....of course it's all about the love of it.Keep it comin! Kellie