So I haven't written a blog post of rambling ferocity in a while. Maybe this one won't be furiously written because I do not find myself furious about anything today. Let's suffice to say that life is good right now. While there are always ups and downs, the world we live in is constantly in a realm of serene chaos and force fully calm bedlam, I find myself right now knowing that I am just where I should be as an artist and a person in this world we all share. Recent events in travel, meditation, love, art making, work, and self work have led me to a place of growth and understanding that I have never really known before.
This year has been absolutely unbelievable as I find myself in process and in the present so much more than I have ever been. I have awakened over the past few years to the understanding that today really is not the end of the world, that decisions made today are not going to the be the end all be all of life, but that being said they do all matter, and all create the whole sum of working parts that have allowed me, day by day, to be given the life I now have. To make work that I love to make, to get excited every day about the possibilities that the future holds and believe that the sky is the limit as long as I am rooted in creating and not ego.
When I arrived home from Japan, the most amazing experience I have had in my life to date to say the least, I quickly enjoyed the opening of the largest accomplishment of my art career to date. The SFMOMA exhibition, "In Memory Of..." opened June 8th, 3 weeks after I returned from my month residency. The roller coaster of life shot up pretty high, and then afterward it was on to Minneapolis for a month of work for the non-profit that is my day job and helps to support my art career in an effort to not exhaust my presence and my ideas too quickly and keep me financially intact (burnout syndrome is the worst syndrome).
Upon this trip in the middle of America I experienced the drop of the roller coaster so to speak. The pit of my stomach stuck in the Mall of America felt like it was eating itself from the inside out. And it was beautiful in all of its anxious, low, depressive glory, for I knew that this is the balance that is life. The scales will always weigh themselves out even in the long run if we just keep our ear to the street and smell the air with each step. While inside it was painful to have gone up so high and then down so low, it was amazing to experience all of these things without any substances, without anything to change the way I was feeling. The gifts of sobriety I must say are the most beautiful and true gifts I have received in my life. Listening to Yeezus on the light rail wishing I was back in Japan watching the toxic, dripping heart of America go by on my way to the church of consumerism made me really understand that I am fit for this lifetime. I am right sized and in my place.
A new found love and affection has recently come into my life, and has made me really grateful for everything that I have ever been through. Whether it was being locked up and in central bookings reflecting on how to not live life, being so twisted on drugs and alcohol that I would end up in the E.R. with tubes and fluids going in me while I was somewhere in a pain so deep it almost consumed me, or going bowling with friends, or drawing a figure that every mark made me feel a sort of explosive, orgasmic love of life, or on a mountain top in Japan in a Buddhist Temple making love to a beautiful woman on the tatami floor and then going in a hot spring, or driving to Pt. Reyes with my partner engrossing ourselves in one another's lives and stories. Like I said on stage right before Japanther performed at my "Past From the Blast" show in 2011 at Kitsch, "We All Do This Together!"
It is a beautiful thing when one can reconcile and be allowed to understand their purpose in this lifetime, in this phase of the energy that we are part of while on this earth. When one can lean back and close their eyes and smile because they know what the universe has asked of them and they seek with their entire life until the end to fulfill that mission. I rest happy every night knowing that I am meant to make art, to create things for humanity to experience, to share my world and my perspective on the world, and to be a conduit of creation for a power and an energy so much larger than myself, that I still am a part of, that we are all a part of.
It's awesome to know that my purpose is to bring people together, to open eyes, to challenge sight and thought, to excite and entertain, to love and be loved. It feels amazing every time I create something new, or get a flood of ideas and plans into my psyche about where my work, where the work that the universe wants to flood through me, is going and what possibilities I am going to share with those dear to me as we all march on and trudge the road to happy destiny! It is true, "We All Do This Together!" And I would have it now other way. Love life, live this life, because its the only you get in this lifetime... Thanks for reading! -John Felix Arnold III P.S. Horiyoshi III in the image below definitely shares my thoughts on this, we kicked it hard in his studio, his energy is infectious, dude is the fucking man!!!!!