I do not think that many people would argue that there is a tragedy unfolding in the world today, known as the coronavirus. It is disrupting lives, making people sick, threatening vulnerable populations, destroying livelihoods and is generally a menace.
I recently completed a sculpture of the coronavirus, which you can see more images of here.
In the comments and amongst friends and family a number of people were wondering why I would make such a dark creation. That inspired me to talk a little more about my thinking before, during and after the experience.
Initially, I was inspired by the interesting images of the virus and that in it’s physical form it was an intriguing shape, that could help me hone my throwing and handbuilding skills.
Beyond that I found the process empowering. The coronavirus has been impacting my mental health and in all honesty making me feel some fear. Part of this is that because of past health issues I have had, I am particularly vulnerable to a poor outcome should I get coronavirus.
Through this process I was able to face my fear around the virus and let it go by making a physical representation of it. Somehow, for me it helped to dispel the fear and helped me get back into a normal artistic practice.
Going through the process I was able to see beauty in the physical form of this piece as well. It brought me hope that as horrible as this pandemic is, that it is an opportunity for the world to become a better place and address more suffering and inequality in the world.
It has also inspired some new creativity. I loved hearing everyone’s comments on other things this sculpture could be. So that will certainly inspire some new makes. But also, I have decided to do a new series of globular forms. Think celestial. I may have to make another piece like this and call it Sputnik.
This easing of fear has allowed me to embrace my art more and find greater peace with this situation. I still have every intention of self isolating to protect myself from the coronavirus and staying safe. I hope all of you stay safe too and find a way to challenge any fear you might have into something that positive and empowering. One way could be by adding your comment for inclusion in The Vase of Dreams. From darkness can come growth and positive change.
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