A Necessary Language

IMG_3347I’ve written many times about my creative process, but thoughts and insights about my work evolve so quickly that any words rapidly become dated and redundant.
I once compared my art to a language that I learn only by direct experience of each letter and word, or a jigsaw that I don’t realise what the the final picture is, until it is completed.
I work with road kill, debri, the naturally dead and the discarded. I always have, but then I’ve always had the same fascination and perhaps identification with things that are not seen as beautiful unless you look at them through a different lense.
I’ve been creating totemic art work with these items since my teens when in some respects it was part of a counter cultural tribal expression; an eighties thing, part of the anarchic taboo breaking at a time when the world was changing or perhaps even on the cusp of ending.
I stopped for a while when I disconnected from myself in a drug use then drug recovery free fall, and when I became me again, I found it necessary to resume the process.
The more recent trend in taxidermy art hasn’t made me a star or increased sales of my objects as my work don’t seem to slot into that genre. I suspect it is too primitive and perhaps that is a good thing as my ‘creatures’ as I call them, I tend to view as my sometimes recalcitrant children, and I would have difficulty sending them to homes which could be unsuitable.
I’ve gone through a minor crisis of late, which though unpleasant can actually be good to have as it shakes things up and creates new perspectives and directions.
I’ve been to the Chelsea district in New York and seen high end conveyor belt investment art, where I most definitely don’t fit, and as I said I stand outside the current cool taxidermy trend (too old? not dressed properly or presenting a cool enough persona?) and my pieces are not overtly occult so that’s another niche market lost. So my work slides between the gaps which is maybe how it’s meant to be. Not an action that makes me money, but something which I have to do, an act which creates insights and expressions.
If I exhibit I sell, but I’m just not ruthless, driven or financially canny enough to do this frequently or in the conventional manner, and I like to play too much.
If I have an exhibition I don’t want a static event. I want a fluid creative dynamic and that edge of chaos element is definitely not a good basis for money making.
The creation of my pieces are not planned in advance. I have ‘ingredients’ that nudge me to amalgamate them when the time is right and they flow into a shape until reaching the point where they become alive.
Years’ ago, when my mother died I had a nasty existential crisis, what is the meaning of life and such like, and I realised, simply enough, life is about creativity.
Creativity is the balance to destruction (both the necessary and unnecessary kind). Creativity is having children, gardening…and art.
So my life is built around the creative act. Illuminating or appreciating the dark corners, expresssing and celebrating the lost, the forgotten, the confusions and the debris.
Fluid in expression but a non negotiable and very necessary act.

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About charlottejane2002

Author of 'P is for Prostitution', 'The Bloody Sacrifice' and co-editor of 'A Contemporary Western Book of the Dead' which are all published by Mandrake of Oxford. Italian publisher Roberto Migliussi has recently released 'The Sky is a Gateway, Not a Ceiling', a book of Charlotte's collected essays printed alongside images of his own art work. Charlotte is also an artist who creates spiritually directed art works from road kill and found objects. She has had her written work printed in anthologies and various magazines and on line publications and has given presentations at many events and institutions including Edinburgh University and Brooklyn's 'Museum of Morbid Anatomy'. Her art work has been exhibited widely including at London's Chelsea Gallery and The Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institute, and is soon to be shown in New York.
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