“Multimedia Artist at Large” is an all-encompassing label I’ve slapped on myself because nothing else seems to stick. Some days it means “unmotivated dilettante” or “well-intentioned dabbler.” Other days I think of myself as a sort of expressionist — someone who will commit to creating the thing that wants creating via its chosen medium and who’ll keep on showing up until the thing is birthed. I don’t actually consider myself a writer, a sculptor, a singer, or (with the exception of being a grateful member of the actors unions and having made a living at it)– an actor. As I say, Multimedia Artist at Large. Have Art, Will Travel.
The first shining moment that ignited this lifelong chase after the grail was in Mrs. Gurwitz’s Elocution class when I was a quiet, bespectacled lass of eight. I’d memorized and recited a poem I now don’t recall, whose words were so beautiful that it was a balm simply to speak them and sink into their imagery. The warm, bright light on that little stage was so loving, and I could feel the audience listening, being somehow transformed and uplifted. That tiny moment of Communion spoke directly to my soul and (apparently) pushed me in the general direction of my destiny.
The second watershed moment was when I was fourteen, watching a performance by Marcel Marceau — my first experience of seeing a Great Artist in person. On that very day, mere hours before, I had been shattered when a beautiful boy turned his very public affection from me to a petite, exquisitely gorgeous girl – yes, the polar opposite of me. I was all broken glass inside, my whole body burning with humiliation and heartbreak, but then . . . the profound poetry of Monsieur Marceau’s soulful, silent articulation embraced, even exalted my pain, transporting me into and through and beyond it. When the curtain fell, I felt as if I’d returned to myself a crucial bit stronger at the core. It was the first time I recall experiencing the formidable healing powers of Art.
I suppose the defining moment came as I sat watching Lily Tomlin’s “Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe” on Broadway. Staring down from the balcony, mesmerized, I so distinctly (and so strangely!) heard my own voice quite clearly in my head, saying, “Oh, that’s what I am: I’m an Artist.” I hadn’t a clue what to do about this “Aha!” at the time, as I was 100,000% invested in being an Actress, every molecule poised and vibrating toward that sole goal. I dimly sensed though, that being an Artist was something that might be inclusive of being an Actress, that the word carried a deeper resonance all its own. As life rambled on, the word “Artist” spoke to me more and more often and began to explain myself to myself ever more clearly.
So, at this juncture, I sculpt, sing, act, write — some of each expression being evidenced herein.
Welcome, and thanks so much for being here!