Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.–Bruce Lee
It’s easy to spot the pretenders–the ones who are imitating others instead of expressing their true selves. It takes courage to stand out and be different. It’s not simply a matter of putting on a bright shade of lipstick, wearing edgy clothes, or dying your hair neon pink. It has more to do with authenticity. Expressing your unique thoughts and unique identity.
For me, an artist that epitomizes self expression is David Bowie. We were lucky to get tickets to a recent exhibit about the artist and his work at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. The show, called “Bowie Is” reveals the range of the artist’s work in music, theater, film, costume design, and even hairstyles.
Unfortunately, Chicago was the only city in the United States which hosted the exhibit. But I am certain it will return given the overwhelming response. For a treat, here’s an animated gif which shows 50 years of Bowie hairstyles which was published earlier this month in Slate Magazine.
For a fearless artist like Bowie, self expression takes many forms and is a courageous exploration of his essential self. His work is never an imitation, but a blending of his unique perspective, ideas, and talents to create a new work. This is also true for all of us who express our essential selves. The painting below created by the Japanese-American artist, Tasuki Hakoyama visualizes that process of self expression for me. His painting entitled “Atlas,” displayed in a recent exhibition at the DeVos Place gallery in Grand Rapids, represents the creative “flow” from the artist to the work and ultimately to the viewer. This blending of the interior self and the exterior work is, for me, the heart of creative self expression. (To view more of Tatsuki Hakoyama’s creative work, click on this link.)
In closing, here’s a song which was running through my head as I was creating this post!
Enjoy expressing yourself this week!
For other thoughts about self expression, click on the links below: