What Makes Human Connection Authentic?

Matriarchal Dance, mixed media monotype, 24" x 18"
Matriarchal Dance, mixed media monotype, 24" x 18"

A Look Within

As we all sit within this bubble of pandemic pause, a myriad of scenarios have come to the surface. Most of which involve an acute awareness of self and our surroundings. In addition, our lack of choice in the matter forces us to look more closely into the mirror devoid of all the usual distractions prior to 2020.

The Emergence of Authenticity

Authenticity: the quality of being genuine, real, not false or copied.

Embracing Authenticity and Human Connection

So, in order for me to move toward authenticity, I had to cut myself off from most viewpoints or reactions other than my own. This is much of the reason why I did not have a lot of close friends as a young adult. I could not trust my low esteem to keep me from taking on the perspective of those around me.

False Connections

For years making connections with my colleagues and students gave me a sense of belonging. But at the same time, that belonging felt hollow. More importantly, my dissatisfaction and disappointment either in the behavior of others and/or my behavior when around them was a constant needle in my side. I often wondered if others felt the same way?

Living with Authenticity

Physical proximity and physical touch is important to our survival. The need to feel needed and that exchange of physical energy. Physical proximity between children and caregivers contains an element of fear. That fear has everything to do with security and safety. These fears seem to have intensified since I was a child.

Finding Connections in the Unfamiliar

When moving to an unfamiliar place, there is always the prospect of new surroundings and not knowing a soul. This prompts me to pause and reflect upon my surroundings with a deeper awareness. To appreciate the solitude. Everything new, nothing familiar. With each move, a feeling of being reborn comes over me. At first, that feeling is one of discomfort, but eventually connections form and energies are exchanged naturally.

My Art and Connection to the Unfamiliar

With each painting or monotype, I am entering the unknown. I have no desire to paint what is familiar. My preference is allowing my intuition to take me places I have not been. My subconscious is there to bring up stored memories while my intuition guides me the rest of the way. More often than not, this creative process is uncomfortable, but it is my voice. I have come to trust that voice, that authenticity, that means of connection with myself.

Image: Matriarchal Dance, 24″ x 18″ mixed media monotype

I chose this piece to accompany the blog because the work is a metaphor for the energy exchange between connections that happen naturally, intuitively and authentically. About midway through this piece, a figurative element appeared. So I allowed that figure to continue forming naturally. My subconscious was bringing forth my desire to visualize, in my own way, those who came before me. The figures and ideas that contributed to my way of being. It has become a dance of the matriarchs and the dance continues.

Writing is an extension of my art. Putting words to the work I create, connecting and weaving my humanity with a broader audience. https://michellelindblom.com

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