About Me and My Art A Little Story
Even as a young child I was visual….and at 8 years of age, while everyone in the family was watching their new black and white TV, I was sitting on the floor with my sketch pad drawing their feet and hands. Mona Lisa hung above my bed and across from her a Modigliani. I wanted to paint like that. I was also moved by the works of Peter Bruegel and Bosch. They inspired my compassion for the suffering of people. Bruegel’s “Beggars” and “Cripples” had a huge impact on my view of what life must have been like for people in their times. I was more inspired by this work than by the portrait paintings of Aristocracy at the time. The paintings made me curious about my society and life around me and I would observe and search out the faces of people that were suffering around me, trying to guess the cause of their pain. And there always was suffering, and I thought about ways to capture it on canvas or paper. My paintings became motivated by trying to capture emotions, not only pain but also other more subtle emotions like awe and pensiveness…and the un-nameable and un-knowable ones, the mystery of life. Mona Lisa is to this day shrouded in mystery, no one has been able to guess her state of mind, her story and I think that is what I loved the most.
I am a post-war child born right at the end of World war II in Poland. I have pictures of myself walking with my Grand-father among the ruins of the city. Going to school we took trips to Auschwitz, under the belief that if we see the millions of children’s shoes left behind, we will never make the same mistake in the future. I cried and had nightmares for years after, and yet when we look around now nothing has changed. Many Hitlers have been born and died and still exist. As a young adult I began to meditate as way to find inner peace among the suffering of people everywhere. I began to study Zen then Tibetan Buddhism with a Lama, it saved me from depression, and slowly over 20 years i began to realize that life is impermanent, dark and light, and rich in its design. My compassion grew without annihilating me in the process, as well as my appreciation for ordinary magic, in life. And I embraced the dictum by Dogen Zenji that “My life is one continuous mistake” and that is okay…” I decided working on myself, my mind was important for me. My art is often the result of this study. I live in a pretty prison, in our earthly existence, we take so seriously, so meaningfully, so righteously. But in reality this body, this life is but a prison confining us to merciless doing, suffering, rejoicing and meaningless acts of boredom, killings and daily survival acts in an attempt to prettify the whole thing, find so called happiness and consume as much as we can of everything before we find our end. To add to the intrigue we have sleep, perchance a dream, a mysterious encounter with our own shallow existence of our mind.
Then we discover God, a benevolent, sometimes frightening father that dispenses favour on some and pain on others. Maybe a mother would be better? No difference really.It is time to face facts, this pretty veneer called life is easily ripped apart when the prison walls start to narrow and tear, when there is no escape in view, no vacation from the fire eating up every shred of your hopes and dreams, and you can no longer ignore that all is illusion and you have to make the leap into the unknowable void, emptiness and scary jaws of what hopefully is bliss.
September 2023 Issue #85 ART MARKET MAGAZINE - thank you for featuring me this year...
Thank you so much Art Market Magazine for including me in your stunning magazine "Top Artists of Today". I am overwhelmed!