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The case of the artist who saved (my) day

This morning, I rolled  out of bed, combed my hair and went to school looking like a beaver fresh from playing in the mud. Seriously, not a good start to what I could tell was going to be an awful, dreadful day. After making the hike from my car to the Owens Art Center on campus, I walked into my advising appointment.

And it all changed.

I was greeted by a wonderful professor who was going to be my new academic advisor and who started talking to me about ME. She really gave me a feeling like she listened and cared– I’ll stop before I get too gushy. Eventually the subject rolled around to an artist whose work has been displayed around the world in ghettos, slums and really desolate areas. I hadn’t heard of him (and neither had she really) until the New York Times ran a story on him today. He is the TED winner for 2010 and is someone who really does move the soul, like most great artists.

His portraits, actually remind me a lot of Avedon because they are so active and full of life. However, at the same time they have a deathly haunting quality that makes me really uneasy. But still, his installations are remarkably beautiful and moving because they overcome the pornographic and stagnate pitfall many of these kinds of works tend to buy into.

photo credit: J R/Agency Vu/New York Times

I mean, when you look at this, how could you not think beauty exists everywhere? Yea, so what if I look like a monstrous iguana, there’s still beauty in everyday life. even in desperate circumstances.


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