This video was kindly produced by Yahoo and the Flickr team in New York in 2014 and it represents my artist statement visually and verbally.
The reset button was pressed, the world is taking a moment, the birds are singing loudly, the trees are not shy to dance in the wind freely, the skies are crisp bright blue, the clouds have more definition and the sun is shining ever more brightly.
As we find out lost time gifted back to us, the usual that we normally filled our time with somehow does not fit anymore. It is as though our software received and is receiving an update. New applications are needed, with new language and upgraded aims and intentions. What are you doing with your new time? Maybe like me you are finding yourself diving into new territories or seeing the old ones with a brand new light?
Where are you traveling to in your mind now that physical travel is no longer an option? Have your dream patterns changed? Do you feel the buzz in the air, the loud silence of something else making itself heard?
For the first time in a long time kindness is celebrated on the news channels! Stories of good deeds are main headlines. Is this planet earth? Is life winning in spite of death?
Something is connecting us all like never before. Do you feel it?
This is day on of lockdown in Germany where we are currently living after the start of the Coronavirus pandemic and life has never been more interesting.
Suddenly there is space, and at first, you feel like you don’t know what to do with all this time, you feel restless like you are forgetting something, an errand, you need to do, a doctor’s appointment, a meeting, something… and then you realise that you need to stop.
And once you feel settled to that fact and you delete all the appointments in your calendar, it starts to dawn on you that something is shifting, onsetting, happening in a big way, seen and unseen that is bringing the whole world to a halt. And you listen very carefully, you hear the planet breathing a sigh of relief.
Manufacturing has stopped, planes are stopping, trains, cars, football games, concerts, events, all the things that allow you to feel lost in the crowd and all of a sudden there is a large mirror facing each one of us.
How will we spend our time now? Will we panic watching the alarmist news? Will we take long unhurried walks in the forest? It is Spring here after all. Will we learn something new? Or much better even, will we take the opportunity to do our much needed dwelling on the meaning of life that we had put aside all these years due to our rushed and busy lives?
What a great opportunity this is. Humans working together to combat an undiscriminating and common threat to all. How do we battle this with our humanity intact? Will we take the time to reconnect to the most basic truth of our connection to our amazing planet and its natural laws? And what about the intensifying and onsetting future? Are we ready to meet it?
In the last few days as we hurriedly tried to get ready for lockdown, I saw scared and worried faces everywhere and a big chunk of confusion and concern, which caused me to be kinder than normal to others along the way. As I let a person pass in front of me on the line, stopped the car for a pedestrian, waved and smiled at a stranger, I realised with great delight that a small act of kindness is going a much longer way than ever before. People are glowing because of it and that caused me to understand that in situations like these, humanity thrives, values are resurrected and the future has a chance…
As 2020 unfolds, it leaves us all stunned as we try to grasp the magnitude of what really is at play in these changing times. Clearly things have no chance of remaining the same in a new intensifying state of affairs that forces even the most arrogant of us humans to stop, reassess and reconsider their role in the fate of humanity on earth. It is later than we think…
Stay safe my friends as we calmly and hopefully with grace and strength we weather the storms of tomorrow.
Above photos are recent compositions inspired by the current times.
The fear of being alone~ we all have it to some extent, the great anxiety that we will have no one to share our moments with, good or bad, the whole time forgetting that we are born alone and we die alone.
Maybe we should take a moment everyday to enjoy, value and make use of our own company, learning to meet and know ourselves a little better.
I once practiced a month of silence and discovered among many things that there was so much to be learned inside of the human complex I learned to call ”me”.
Who can be sure that the future is a continuation of and a consequence of the now? Could it be that the future is arriving independently of all what has been and that is?
Isn’t every dawn a new fresh beginning and a new permission for a brand new future?
Do we decide our future or is it predestined?
Is the answer hidden in the future and any answer that we arrive at today is already condemned to be in the past?
And what about light? What lives in the ever changing light?
Today I took this iphone photo of a tree outside my parents in law’s home where we are gathered for Christmas and I showed it to my sister in law. The light had a haunting quality in that moment that made me stand still in utter awe.
She ran out to the window and said to me “you must have magicked your image, it does not look like that!”
The truth is it did look like that and so much more but light doesn’t wait. It moves and evolves and radiates differently with every passing moment. Light is alive that way.
Musing last from an enchanted Christmas Day in the German countryside.
Merry Christmas my friends
Europe loves its Christmas Markets, the festive mood, the warm drinks cuddled by cold hands, the delicious smells of roasted almonds and the magical lights that chase away the darkness of winter. From the first advent till the winter solstice, people try to spend as much time as possible out in the markets calling on hope, warmth and light to comfort them through the long hard winters.
In the last 2 weeks I went with my camera and some fellow photographers chasing the Christmas spirit from Valkenburg in the Netherlands to Duesseldorf and then today to magical Cologne.
The seasons have a magical way of easing us into the inescapable reality that time passes and waits for no one. Before the grey starkness of winter, we are flooded by a gush of warm color to keep us hopeful for the coming of spring. Nature is the best artist.
These recent images from my Instagram page have been titled “chasing spirits”, and for the first time I find myself seeing a distinct line running through these street portraits that were taken by me in different Asian countries but solicit the same emotional reaction from me. There is something that draws me in to the internal processes of strangers through the maps of their faces, the history recorded in their eyes and the roadmaps of their lives in every line and wrinkle that cause me to pause and wonder: what drives me to chase these images and irks me to go to more places and stop, look and capture? It’s a strong driving force that never relents and I am hoping that after the chase, the cause may reveal itself. It’s a journey of passion and every moment brings me closer to myself…
Never before have I felt so unsure about what the future holds as I do today. Every morning, a new story in the news stranger than the next, wold leadership try to force the strangest and lowest of standards as the new norm and the first signs of tremors as the future threatens to eradicate the past. Anyone not feeling this must be sleep walking through life and bouncing from distraction to escape. How did we get here and what will our children’s world look like?
The greatest part of living in Europe is the proximity of different cities with their varied history and culture and if you enjoy photography and travel as I do, then magic is just a few hours away.
Now being back home in Germany, the short journey feels like a pleasant dream added to my visual diary of this amazing world we live in.