Saturday, January 17, 2009
watching it happen
Last night was not your average Friday night for me and Jon, meaning it did not involve Netflix, beer, tortilla chips, or the couch. Here's the run-down (as if you care). Stick with me though, I do have something to say at the end.
After dropping the kids at Nana & Papa's, we stopped by a surprise 40th birthday party for a friend from church. Quiet everyone... Surprise! Grab a deviled egg, hug the birthday boy, peace out.
From there we hit up McCormick & Schmick's on Lake Union to celebrate Jon's 30th birthday. The menu had his name on it. Blue Marlin for him, cedar-planked salmon for me. Very nice.
It was 9:30 when we finished dinner: too early to go home when the babysitting is free. Through facebook, I had heard about a concert & live art event not far from the restaurant. Three wrong turns later (thanks Google Maps), we were settled into 2 stools at the back of a coffee shop listening to a one-chick band called "Husbands, Love Your Wives" and watching Scott Erickson paint. It was a cool experience, in a 'this-is-not-at-all-our-scene-but-we-can-still-sit-here-and-enjoy-it' kind of way.
Watching people make art totally captivates me. Whether it is music or painting or dance, I am entranced by the utter vulnerability of the artist. Other types of art allow for revisions, adjustments, fine-tuning, or even Auto-Tuning, but performance art is happening completely in the present. It is a pure representation of the artist's creative abilities at that precise moment. You can't dress yourself up to be something you're not; you must put your authentic self out there to be applauded or ridiculed. Talk about courage.
The music last night was not the best music I've ever heard. To be honest, I can't say I even really liked it. But it was authentic and unpolished and it was made fresh, right there in front of me. The painting was amazing, but the most valuable thing about it was the incredible privilege of being allowed to watch the process. For crying out loud, I don't even let Jon look over my shoulder while I'm blogging, and he is my husband. Scott invites complete strangers to watch him work. I admire that level of openness and vulnerability.
I have more to say about performance art as worship... but I am going to leave you hanging and save that for another post. Now go out there and watch some art, or better yet - make some, if you're braver than I.