The Stone Institute


I am readying my work for my first solo show at Gallery Ouroboros on 21 April 2016. It has been a long journey, a fantasy to build and show my art in my own gallery. What has been harder for me is to accept that I am an artist with a voice. Harder yet, was understanding that I needed to share what I created with a diverse and sophisticated audience. I share the following thoughts that have percolated into my consciousness. Or, perhaps Genius has once again tapped into my receptivity. These thoughts put Eternal into perspective.

I realize that if one is most concerned about what they can acquire in the material world and is much less concerned about whom they can be in the eyes of the less fortunate, then they will have nothing when they die. What's worse, they will become no one at all. I am an Artist; not an emerging artist, not a painter, not a sculptor, not a metallurgist, not a musician, not a poet, not a novelist, not a politician, not an iconoclast. I am an Artist.

To many artists, the act of creating frees their Souls from the chains of society's self-imposed conventions. When I paint, I soar with those who have painted before me; when I write poetry, I sit with past wordsmiths who worked diligently to paint a picture with words; when I sculpt, I feel the movement of Life in all of its chaotic forms.

As a person, I feel the pain of abandonment, the sadness of illness, the sorrow of losing when winning was all that mattered, the agony of death, the pain of trusting someone who was untrustworthy, the false Hope that the Illusion-of-Love brings to our hearts, the despair of being no-one or having nothing, and unfortunately I see that America as a society has replaced community and compassion for division and greed. I see it every day. I hear it every day. I sense it every day. I live it every day. And, I refuse to let division and greed rot my Soul.

The joy that creating art brings to me is indescribable. Although I feel physical pain when I work on my art, it opens my mind to so many possibilities in all aspects of life. I don't perceive us as creatures with a separate body, mind, and soul. I believe we are all of it together, created by a Divine Power, and meant to live in communities that include the good and the bad, the weak and the strong, and the beautiful and the ugly in all of their appearances. For those of you who view my Soul through the art I create, be gentle in your gaze, be kind in your words, and be honest and true with yourself first before you decide to share your honesty with me.

If you are concerned about perfection, then you are an artist at heart. Perfection has many dimensions. The perfect human is without; mankind by nature is imperfect and therefore a true representation of the nature of mankind is imperfect. Engineers are paid to make the uncertain certain. The clergy and hierophants are paid to instruct us on how to live a perfect Godly life. The perfect life, one that is fashioned in ideal moral code both written and unwritten, both spoken and unspoken, will stop all movements of freedom, true Love, chance, and opportunity. There are too many of us trying to live a perfect life. There is no such thing as a perfect life.

However, art is always perfect. It is a puzzle piece trying to find its place in the human mystery. Those who find a piece of art attractive or emotionally moving will leave its view with a sense of loss. I believe art should be beautiful, sometimes overwhelming, or sublime. Art can resonate with the dark night of the soul or the Light that accompanies the emergence of Spring. It can be created in political or social contexts, expressing both freedom and/or the tyranny of man. I believe every so often, it's good to visit the world of the dead, if only to jolt us back into the world of the living; hopefully inspiring us to take each and every breath with a sense of fortune. It's seldom the skull of mortality that frightens us. It's that all of us know we have a skull and it is mortal.

Most important, people tend to adopt an inability to grasp or access the beauty of all life - comedy, romance, tragedy, or death. The material world is filled with dishonesty. Perhaps one could refer to the illusions we live under as a perfect lie. The Soul's Truth lies deep beneath the physical. Those physical or emotional encounters that are judged as ugly or inhumane are meant to wake us up and open ourselves to the source of the corruption that is hemorrhaging our lives to Death, making us slaves to those anti-Christ like figures that promote their personal agendas, proselytizing the moral right, the Righteousness of God, and the inhumanity of mankind.

Thinking has become diseased. Willfulness has become common and expected. The innocent are no longer able to mature into their authentic selves because their right to be who they are is being challenged everyday in every way.

We are all individuals arranged in a community of political corruption that serves only to benefit those who are politically corrupt. That is Eternal. And, it includes the art community in Memphis, as well as the rest of the world. I am an Artist. Artists are created to change the world: one song or one two-dimensional piece or one three-dimensional piece or one poem or one story or one film or one play or one blog at a time.

The moment you step into a gallery or museum and gaze at a piece of art, you enter the Eternal. In that moment, you are experiencing what others have experienced for ten thousand years or more –the feeling of seeing something fresh, created by another human being, and emotionally moving. Even if your thought is “so what?” It's eternal. Historically, mankind has said “so what?” to almost everything at one point or another. The feeling of “so what?” is as eternal as crying, laughing, experiencing pain, suffering, feeling anger or frustration, and the rest of all the human emotions. We all learn to Trust based on our experiences. The same is true for the Art of Living. Don't forget to embrace the Artist(s) that speak to your Soul in whatever form of art they create, for they are the true Redeemers of the Spirit of Man. And, we all need a little redemption from time to time.

We live everyday in the Eternal. I am an Artist. I am Eternal.

Kevin S. "Kiki" Merigian © April 2016

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