I dream of the Pacific Northwest

It has been hard to go back to the digital piece in progress, since I feel like I’ve already moved on from the collection about the houses. I am not looking for a home anymore, I have found it within myself, in Johnny’s heart, in my new friends, in my art and in the world outside myself. The only homes I have yet to find are in the Swedish art community and a geographical place that makes me feel at peace. I know I don’t belong here in this city, or in this country for that matter. My dream is to move to the States one day, with Johnny of course. I have a soft spot in my heart for the Pacific Northwest. It sure has some Nordic qualities and it’s the home to many locations used in Twin Peaks (more on Twin Peaks in tomorrow’s post).

But I’m not a nature person. I wouldn’t really live that close to the lakes or the woods even if I’d move there. But it is beautiful and I feel drawn to the moody and misty landscape. I love rain, so perhaps Seattle would fit me perfectly.

I want Johnny to stay in the States, Sweden doesn’t really have that much to offer an American poet when it comes to a writer’s community, but he is sacrificing it just to be with me. I feel very grateful. I would love to move to him but it is impossible right now – and I really don’t want to live in a country run by a Narcissistic maniac. But I am sure we will find a way to move to the States in the future. Or somewhere else. Just not here. At least not until I feel like I belong to a real context here. A context that makes sense to me – and feels like home.

Three days

It has been three days of rest and meditation – and a little trip to IKEA. I am planning some changes to my apartment for my future life with Johnny. I feel excited that things are now in motion. Finally. My plan for 2017 is working out great. Soon, I will try to make an up-to-date list of available works for sale. I have many works to price and pricing is not my favorite task. It is like trying to put a price on your soul. But – it needs to be done. And somehow, I need to promote the Swedish writing project The Anxiety Bible (Ångestbibeln). I have an idea of how to do that.

I can’t believe I didn’t felt like being creative this weekend, but I am still in a transition phase with my new routines with working full time and all. I have to give it time. But my God, I am so hungry for going back to painting!

ÅNGESTBIBELN uppdaterad!

 

Det är söndag och ÅNGESTBIBELN är nu uppdaterad! Denna vecka är ägnad åt de första tre delarna i en svit dagboksanteckningar från min tid då jag blev utbränd och inte kunde arbeta med min konst. Sviten fortsätter nästa vecka. Detta ger en unik inblick i en konstnärs tvivel och förändringsprocesser och skildrar den ångest som växer sig starkare ju fler självtvivel och blockeringar som byggs på under tiden det inte går att skapa. Ett inre krampaktigt tillstånd. I mitt fall varade krampen i åtta långa år. www.angestbibeln.se

 

The Doctor

I keep thinking of the time I went to a Doctor because I was feeling depressed and after he had been listening to my stories about being ‘burned out as an artist’ and ‘overcoming trauma’ he looked at me and said: “You are not depressed. I don’t feel sorry for you. You are probably more intelligent than most people and you are talented. All you need is to get a haircut and a job. Then you should move to Paris and be amongst other artists who are like you. I won’t prescribe any pills for you, instead I want you to read Malcom Gladwell’s OUTLIERS: THE STORY OF SUCCESS. Buy the book and stop feeling sorry for yourself. That will help you.”

Thirtysomething

I love the intro music for Thirtysomething including the famous acoustic guitar -mandolin -coke bottle melody.

I’ve ordered a few seasons of the 80’s drama series Thirtysomething that I loved watching when I was younger.  I haven’t seen it in at least 25 years – and it’s weird watching it again when I am now thirtysomething myself.

Me, being thirtysomething

Some themes in the show feel really dated, while others are still relevant and real.

My twentysomething years were horrible,  the worst years of my life. I only have a handful of good memories from those years. Being thirtysomething have been about rebuilding myself and my life and creating a career as an artist.

Me, being twentysomething

 

I still have two more years left in my thirties, then I’ll be fourtysomething. I am really looking forward to it. Like a fresh start. A new era.

I know that I’ve come so far, I’ve reached places I never thought were possible to reach. I am the best version of me that I’ve ever been. But I feel like there still are some missing pieces.  I will look for them in my years of being fourtysomething. It will be the decade of exploration and conquests. I guess it is the nature of a person being twentysomething, but since I lost those years to trauma and PTSD,  I have to reclaim them.

Me, at the age of 27 (when I rediscovered my sexuality that had been ‘killed’ by my abuser and me at the age of 34 when I was having a life crisis and knew I had to lose everything in order to start over – leaving everything behind.)

Being thirtysomething is like building a bridge between the dreams you had when you were young and the reality of life as it really turned out while most of your dreams were crushed but also reinvented.

Dreams that will always be dreams

Life is going really fast right now. Monday turns to Thursday in a heartbeat. Tomorrow is Swedish midsummer and I’m off from work and I will take this long weekend to just be without myself and my art. I need to get back into the flow, I am drifting far away from the momentum I had before I started working. But I won’t be too hard on myself. It has been a very intense month and I am not used to getting up 6 in the morning or being away from home for 9 hours. I am still trying to adjust to all the new elements and routines – but I am having a great time at my new job and I love all my colleagues. I was lucky this time.

I have so many dreams I wish to go for –  some of them are just out of reach while others are so far away that I don’t even know if it’s possible to approach them. Perhaps some dreams are just meant to be dreamt and not lived. But still – there is some magnetic power to dreams, like they are pulling us in a certain direction and sometimes that is all it takes to spark a new dream or vision.

About “Iceland”

My digital piece “Iceland” from 2015 is also a visual poem, based on my long distance relationship with Johnny.

“I am now on the second flight, it’s been delayed an hour so and I’m just sitting in the plane feeling so happy that you and I are building this wonderful home together. I’m now halfway away from both our apartments, somewhere over Iceland and thinking about how I am in the middle, between our two worlds.”
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– Johnny (on the plane from San Fransisco to Stockholm, 2015)
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Heatwaves

A day ruled by the heatwave and bright sunshine. Where did my gray days disappeared to? As always when it’s bright and hot outside, I don’t really feel quite like myself. The weekends go by so fast now days. It’s Friday night and then suddenly Sunday evening already. I have to be more self disciplined from now on, otherwise I won’t ever get back into the flow of making art again. And it’s just so ridiculous that I only have one piece left to finish in the first new collection. The House of Lava. It is such a personal piece – a love story about me and Johnny.

However, my mind is packed with new ideas – both for myself and for collaborations with other artists. Even at my daytime job I get to be creative and collaborate with home stylists and graphic designers. I feel such gratitude.

I am also planning a new photo shoot with Karin. I miss her.

I can’t stop listening to The Weekend song I posted yesterday, I am so in love with it. “I feel it coming”. Yeah, I do.

Even though I am haunted by this recent heatwave, I feel like I am riding on my own heatwave as well. So many good things are just around the corner.

I feel it coming.

Creating my own network of like minded artists

Painting by Mikael Dalnäs

It is a sleepy Sunday. I haven’t done much this weekend, I am just trying to relax and recharge as much as I can. The plan is to go back to working with my art after I come home from my daytime job at the furniture store. And for that I need a lot of new energy.

My artist date for today got cancelled but yesterday I contacted another Swedish artist I’ve recently discovered and admire – Mikael Dalnäs and he fell in my love with my art as well. He suggested we should collaborate in the future and I would love to, once I am more into the flow of painting. I am still trying to find my groove in front of the easel.

Slowly, I am building my own network of like minded and amazing artists and creative people here in Sweden. I have big plans for us. Big and wonderful plans.

Brainsexuality

My sexual orientation visualized (‘brainsexuality’). Attracted to feeling connected to someone else’s intellect, inner world or emotional and mental presence.
[photo: artist unknown.]

New directions

Walking home after work. The railroad with all the crisscrossed tracks is a perfect metaphor for where I am in life. I welcome any new direction or path. I am hungry for adventures, new experiences and positive challenges.

A break

It is lunch break at work. Another gray day. It has been a gray summer and for that I am grateful. I haven’t been able to be creative at all this week. Yesterday I knocked out right after my talk with Johnny during his lunch break (my 9 pm). I miss my art. I miss to flow with the mojo and dig deep into things. I miss feeling connected to my own private Universe without interruptions. Tomorrow I’ll try to be as creative as I can. On Sunday I have a meeting with another artist from my hometown – which is part of my plan to gather creative people and network so we can collaborate and put together great group shows in the future. I have never been so optimistic about the future before. It is filled with so many good things and they are all waiting for me. The biggest difference about my new future if I compare it to all the futures I’ve been waiting for before, is that I am creating this one from scratch. It will be my masterpiece.

I promise to be louder

I am watching this week’s episode of “The Handmaid’s Tale” and it is the scariest thing I’ve ever seen – not because the fantasy of a post-apocalyptic Western society, but because it highlights the issues that some women all over the world are dealing on a daily basis – especially in other cultures and traditions. It is scary because it is too close to reality and nobody is really addressing how messed up this world is when it comes to these matters. I don’t call myself a feminist because I believe that I am just a person – a human being – and the idea of equality (gender, religion, social status and class, sexual orientation etc) should be the true and real general perception of this world, not a ‘thing’ that you call yourself or believe in. But it is disturbing how ‘women’s issues’ (I really dislike that term) are ignored and trivialized. “The Handmaid’s Tale” visualizes them in a clear and exaggerated way. It isn’t the stories in the series that are haunting me, it is the silence in the world that covers up the REAL issues behind the exaggerations. I wish I could do something. Do more. Try harder. Contribute more. I want to be more open about how women experience life, love, society, abuse, relationships, their own bodies and sexuality. I promise to try harder. To be louder. To be more unapologetic about the true nature of women.

For future adventures

I am so tired tonight. I can barely keep my eyes open. But I still want to tell you about my day. After work I met up with the boss for the local culture hall (Hallarna) and got a guided tour. I am looking for a cool space for a future art related adventure. It is truly an inspiring place and I’ve got many new ideas that I will try to make happen next year.

Red

Red has always been my favorite color – and red was a theme in many of Ingmar Bergman’s movies. Perhaps the color red is what connects me to his inner world. The color of the inside. The color of our hearts, the world underneath our skin and the color of our wildest desire – the desire to connect, to bleed into each other’s existence.