Ch..ch..ch..ch..changes….

Going home....
Going home....

Anatole France, french poet and novelist, wrote “All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another.”

When we moved to Wisconsin from the Chicago area, I was longing for a “shot in the arm” sort of change but must admit I wasn’t truly as prepared as I thought.  I was not one of those kids who travelled and changed homes as a kid…I was the “rooted forever in my town” sort.  I fully embraced change when I went back to school and loved every minute of it.  When I went to Wisconsin I tried to fully embrace change again, but this time the playing field was much larger and I initially struggled.  However, after I got acquainted, just like with school, I loved every minute of it.  Looking back now I believe my struggles were caused because I had to give in to the idea that part of the old me had to succumb to what was to become the new me.

Whenever a big change comes into our lives, I absolutely believe we experience significant transformation both physically and psychologically.  Wisconsin gave me the gift of getting to know myself better, redefine my passions (such as arts and their advocacy), and meeting an incredible community of artists that belong to the Cedarburg Artists Guild.  I would suggest all art guilds, councils, commissions, and cultural centers take notice to how things are done in Cedarburg, Wisconsin and use them as an example of how to become, by combining resources and talent, a strong beacon for the arts.  There is a passionate partnership between the Cedarburg Artists Guild and the Cedarburg Cultural Center that I have never seen before and one that I believe benefits each party, allowing them to focus on various pieces of arts involvement without overlap.  I am so fortunate to have been able to examine both to see how they work together and apart, which has renewed my passion for arts advocacy.  Artists in Cedarburg are heralded and cherished in their community and are recognized for the large influence they have.  In turn local businesses and government open up their doors and spaces, promoting local talent at a level that I haven’t seen yet in Chicagoland.  Artists come from near and far to be a part of this group and their focus on promoting the arts is the best I have seen thus far.

While introducing myself to the Cedarburg Artists Guild, I was fortunate enough to meet Susan Hale www.susanhaleart.com, who is an extremely talented, successful, and well known artist.  I owe so much to Susan.  She reached out to me, mentored me, and became a friend in Wisconsin who showed me what being an artist can be and I would have remained balled up in my shell if not for her.  Looking back at my time with Susan, I see how important and valuable it was to have a resource to bridge the gap caused by being new and unfamiliar.  I know from my experience, getting to know Susan gave me the comfort and confidence to meet others and for that I am so grateful to her.  Plus Susan is just great anyway…a fabulous friend.

However, now I am back home but not as the same person I was before.  I am starting the next leg of my journey  to discover how the new and “changed” me will contribute to the art communities here. While trying to let go of the person I was both here before and in Wisconsin, I am looking forward to meeting artists, seeing old artist friends, and doing what I can to help in the progress and pursuit of arts in general.  I hope to take some of what I have learned in Wisconsin, as an artist, and create that same energy here.

If you know of an opportunity in the arts where a passionate visionary is needed, I would appreciate the connection.  Not only am I looking forward to picking up a paintbrush again, but I am looking to jumpstart a long career in the arts as well.

Cheers!

What I want to be when I grow up…

Hi everyone!

I know I have been away for a while, but I am back.  I had an aunt pass away recently…another voice silenced by cancer.  Death in our family is a double-edged sword.  During the wake, cousins from 5 factions come together in a common bond.  The span of ages, of all these cousins, is about 20 years between the oldest and the youngest.  In my family, I have 18 counsins total.  It’s quite a gathering and there is always a celebration of our childhood involved; sharing stories of my aunt and uncle who are now rejoined somewhere we cannot see.  We talked about all the adventures we had as kids in my grandparent’s tavern named Chuck’s Wagon; laughing about the Charlie Pride or Mac Davis songs on the jukebox, the toaster oven cheeseburgers grandma made us, or the Thanksgiving KFC served on the pool table because grandma forgot to turn on the oven to cook the turkey.  We had so many great times being together every weekend at the tavern.  Can you honestly imagine 15-18 kids every weekend running around a tavern?  It was the best, but I digress.  As fun as the wake evening is (to see everyone and reminisce), the funeral day is crushingly sad because of the loss we all feel.  The loss of our loving aunt and the loss of being those carefree children.    I will miss her.

But another thing that this past week or so has shown me, is how important the fight for cancer is and how the fight must continue.  I have collected artwork to auction off at this year’s Discovery Ball in April.  16 artists, including myself, have donated just under $18,000 of artwork for the event.  I could not be more proud of the work collected.  In this journey I have realized that this is what I am really good at.  I really care about the artists I meet along this path and I am passionate about what they produce and why.  I am also good at business and have interlaced non-profit work throughout my life.  Curating for a cause just seems like a natural direction for me.  I am excited about artwork and just as excited about a good cause.

This blog is to canvas my path after graduation and I would like to curate auction galleries for fundraisers.  Artists have a voice and their voices can be shared to make great changes in this world.  Art should never just decorate a wall, it should always be an extension of the artist’s heart and mind.  It may not scream it’s intentions; often a whisper is just as strong.  We are taking steps forward…