You Are Not Your Artworks

November 2023

Picture this :

You're visiting a museum.
You see a painting that you like.
You find it beautiful.

Next to you, a girl is telling her friend how awful she thinks this same painting is.
She really doesn't like it.

Do you take offense?

She didn't like the painting you liked.
Are you hurt ?


Silly questions, right ? It's pure common sense that everybody's got different tastes.

But I mean...
Are you sure you shouldn't be taking it personally?
She said she didn't like this painting you liked, she said it was awful!

Hmmm still no. I can't get you to take it personally: "Everybody's got different tastes and how weird should I be to personally take comments about someone else's work? His work has nothing to do with me, that's not my work! That's someone else's work!

That's the point.

Have this exact same relationship to your own pieces of work.

The same relationship you currently have to other artists' pieces of work.
Because that's the great illusion : your artworks have nothing to do with you either - as much as you might enjoy thinking so.
You contributed to their making, yes, you channeled them.
But they're living for themselves. They're not you.
We're antennas hearing beings asking for existence into 3D. And we obey.
And it's beautiful. And the feelings are awesome.
But we are the pipe, we are not the beings.

This erroneous identification to the beings is common during the first phases of an artist's life.
The art immensely benefits from this shift.
Because identifying to your artworks is wrong like a parent identifying to his child.
One can lose his place from sight.
But roles have to be clear and set apart.

If someone likes one of your pieces : good for the piece. (And good for this person.)
If someone else doesn't like this piece : sad for the piece.
But we know that the piece doesn't care.

It will live its life, like its siblings, randomly triggering the beauty response in some people.
And that's amazing to know.
As will the other hundreds pieces of art we helped to come into this world.
As will the piece we're currently working on right now and that is almost finished.
Boom, sail away, my darling. Thank you for passing through. I'm already onto your next brother or sister.
But never, ever, has it something to do with us.