The piece is entitled “This is the darkness of the womb, not of the tomb”. The title is a reworking of a phrase used by Valarie Kaur a Sikh civil rights activist, lawyer, educator, filmmaker and lawyer.
In the midst of clear political, economic, ecological, moral and human rights disasters, I often find myself overwhelmed. It is sometimes difficult to live in a world that is transgressing on human, political, environmental and economic fronts; where people are taught to think the worst about each other and to look out only for the narrow interests of self. It often seems like there are no meaningful avenues for personal agency and collective empowerment.
Through art, I’ve found that it is possible to reframe our complex, subjective realities. The principles of beauty compel us to look for beauty's source in the best and worst in our world. The leaves and the trees and the rubble and rot. The search for beauty causes us to search in the unexplored corners of existence, find awe and pull at the strings of transcendence. When we start pulling, destructive narratives of greed and ego begin to unravel. When we allow ourselves and others to experience a fuller range of what it means to be human, we discover new ways of being and collectively acting.
I am not happy that there is so much rubble at our feet, but I only know how to do what beauty commands. Search. Feel. Gather the building blocks and hope that when we put one stone on top of another, that something divine, substantial and resilient will be built.
. Thanks @annasofie for the 📸