Wednesday, September 21, 2016

On Failure

About a year ago-I remember the exact moment-I was lying on my flowery, cozy, bed, and I asked myself,"HAVE I FAILED ENOUGH?" I recounted my professional failures of the past few years, and decided that NO, I hadn't failed enough. I wanted my failure list to be longer, deeper, and wider. Those of you who know me well might be screaming out loud at the screen right now, "NOOOOO!!! Jill! You've failed enough! I think you're ok in that department! You have reached your quota!!!" But I humbly disagree. The more artistic risks that I take, the more my conviction to impact the world grows. The more grants that I apply for, even if I receive zero of those funds, the more I fine-tune my sense of purpose. The more challenging projects that I attempt, the more I can focus my energy, distill and refine my tools as an artist, and potentially reach more people with a vision of inclusivity,open-mindedness, and a love for humanity. After two police killings of unarmed black men this week, a bomb in NYC,and a genocidal war in Syria-just to name a portion of the suffering and insanity of the world today, how could I not put myself out there with my arms open and my ego willing to take the hit? Art has the power to change, to heal, to open doors, to call to action. I'll let you know if I get the grant that I'm working on now, but until then, I'll keep working on expanding my list of failures. And hopefully by this time next year, it will be longer, deeper, and wider.