Hayley James

Guerilla art

by mjjames17/12/2009

I am very into art and creativity personally and for its use in youth work. Over the last few months I have aimed to be more deliberately creative, not worrying about getting things right, but just taking space to be messy, to create and to fail. This has been quite a difficult process for me, as I tend to want things to be perfect and neat and tidy. It has been very freeing to not have to have everything like this. In my journey of creativity I have come across a woman called keri smith. She is an artist who aims to free others in to art and creativity. I love the way she makes art accessible and challenges the idea of what art is all about.

I love this quote written at the beginning of her guerilla art kit

"It is something to be able to paint a particular picture, or to carve a statue, and so make a few objects beautiful; but it is far more glorious to carve and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we look. To affect the quality of the day - that is the highest of arts." Henry David Thoreau
And I love this idea too, that art is not just about making beautiful things but about transforming our communities, effecting the day of those around us.
I have recently purchased 2 of her books. Number 1 is 'this is not a book' which is a book of actions, challenges, space for doodles, inspiration and so on that is designed to open up our creative energies and help us to express ourselves more fully. The first challenge is to carry the book around every where you go for a whole week doing what is said inside. The book which is actually not meant to be viewed as a book, encourages cutting it up, adding things to it and enhancing its pages. For someone who has an issue with neatness this is going to be a real challenge for me... but I am also very excited about what might come out of this process.
Number 2 is 'the guerilla art kit', which shows you how to put the above quote into action, giving ideas of how we might transform the world around us and how we might get our own messages out there. Its very scary... but also offers lots of opportunities.
I am really looking forward to where each book might take me and how my creativity will be stretched in the process.

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