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Tag: art

Tapping into ‘Heroic Compassion’

Let’s talk about behavior and politics and our new world order. Not only am I struggling to find my place in the latter, but I find myself judging people’s apathy or – and this is key – their perceived apathy. I don’t know how you CAN’T be angry right now. I don’t know how you are posting little ha-has about your book or your business or sharing memes with clever quotes while the world as we know it is burning to the ground. Maybe I envy you? Maybe when the Great Creator made me and lined up my cells...

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Understanding the Essence of the Artist

Back in 2000 when Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band were on their Reunion Tour, I caught a couple of those shows at Madison Square Garden. Included in the set list in all 10 sold-out New York concerts was American Skin (41 Shots) and it was met with some controlled hostility from the crowd. The song, written about the shooting of unarmed Amadou Diallo by four NYPD officers, expressed what so many of us wondered – even if a mistake is made and you think a wallet is a gun, how is it possible that so many shots are fired? Is it a gun? Is it a knife? Is it a wallet? This is your life I recall thinking how courageous it was for Springsteen to sing it, even in the face of the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association calling for a boycott. It didn’t feel political so much as humane. All these years later — amidst the throes of my own artistic growth spurts as well as those of my life coaching clients who are mostly creatives — I see it more as necessary than brave. Artists must express. And not just about our broken hearts or sexual hunger or the cool car we had when we were coming of age. Real artists speak from a soul level to what is eating at us, terrorizing our thoughts, cycling through...

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Me and Those ‘Big Eyes’

From the moment I saw director Tim Burton talk about Big Eyes on The Daily Show, I became almost obsessed with seeing it. I wasn’t sure why. I had never seen a film he directed because I was simply never compelled to (I did see 9, which he produced). Unquestionably my fascination was partly because I was drawn to the art of Margaret Keane, although I never could have put her name to it. All I knew was that her work was familiar. I had a couple of her prints in my bedroom growing up in the 1960s when...

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A Poet Reaches My Soul

There is a point in The Belle of Amherst — an off-Broadway play in which poet Emily Dickinson is brought alive by the compelling Joely Richardson — where she describes her experience at Mount Holyoke Female Seminary (as it was known then). The girls were divided into three groups – Christian, Hope, and No Hope. Dickinson dryly notes that she was the leader of the latter group. I fell in love with her right then. Because here’s the thing. I saw an ad in The New York Times for the play and instantly sent an email to my friend...

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