Subjects of Maternity

by: , August 2, 2020

Art Project with Daughter Klara (3 years old)

My art education was in more than just one field or area of specialism. That’s why I love mixing different media. Every time you blend drawing, printing, graphic design, typography and photography in any configuration, you open up new creative potential.

Here, I’ve used a grey pencil to represent the rational adult world, while my daughter’s colourful interventions and improvements in every image stand for children’s creativity, and their contrasting emotional intelligence.

First, I drew everyday objects, those with which my daughter was familiar. Once I finished each sketch, I gave it to Klara, encouraging her to paint and draw over my drawing, as well as apply tape and stickers directly onto the surface of my picture.

Klara ruined my images, but, to an extent, also enriched them. I soon noticed that her process, and its results on my work, mimicked the presence of children in any couple’s life: they both impair and enhance their parents’ existence.

Once children arrive, many parents lose the ability to focus, but at the same time, they gain the ability to compromise. Finding a middle ground becomes an integral part of any family’s everyday life. Planning loses any meaning, as at any minute your schedule can suddenly change and turn into chaos.

For me, the chaotic daily living with my kids offers an opportunity for fresh creative endeavours, and a new and unusual inspiration. Children protect us from settling down in our mundane comfort zone. Their presence, and their unique worldview, alter our perspective. And, just like that, boredom vanishes from the lives of mums and dads.

Parenthood challenges us even further, as we race against the clock. However, as a result, we very quickly acquire the skill to differentiate between vital and non-essential work—we learn how to set our priorities right and let go of less urgent or valuable things, activities, and even chores.

This is how motherhood has helped me to become a conceptual artist. Living with my children 24/7, I only have short blocks of time for reflection before I start a new project, typically while I am on the go, catering for my family. When I am on my way to pick up my children from school or when I engage in different more or less playful activities with them, I take notes on my mobile phone, or I make quick sketches. And, to be honest, some of my projects take months or even years to crystallise.

My artwork is not instant. I struggle to find the time to work on any new project. Still, I am sure that my experience of motherhood, which at first seemed to limit my creativity, has now enriched my process. My work has become more considerate, mindful, efficient, and, quite possibly, more sophisticated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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