A friend of mine recently reminded me of work I submitted to an art gallery as part of Hamilton, Ontario’s annual art-fest, Supercrawl.
The experience is one I’ll never forget. The exhibit began as a therapeutic, feminist activity between two friends – we ripped out pages from old romance novels and blacked out the words that were “romantic,” honing in on the narratives of abuse and trauma. We framed the pages and called the exhibit “Reframing Romance.” The result was a wall full of jarring narratives, or as my friend called them, “warnings by women for women.” We weren’t artists, but our work had a message.
Not only did we manage to sell work, we also managed to have people spend more than a minute or two at the wall, working together to interpret the messages and explain the possible meanings to their companions and loved ones. I’m still very proud of the fact that even though we weren’t artists, we had a goal to create and display art, one that we executed within a very short time-frame.
I share this experience because it’s a good example of how we don’t need to be the best at something to follow through on an idea or step outside of our comfort zones. Sometimes, all we need is purpose and conviction.