As we Mark we are rewiring the way we perceive reality. What better paradigm than the academic training of visual arts and how deeply ensconced in materialism and economic machinery that world often manifests. Our interest is tacking in on the winds of intuition and the sensorial connection of the body as we develop the imaginal that leap of vision. Heart orientation is central to this process and as the HeartMath Institute explains through its innovative research in stress, coherence and heart-brain interaction, this requires some tools. We will look at their resources for optimal performance through coherence. The three most powerful techniques are Freeze-Frame®, Cut-Thru® and Heart Lock-In®.
Traditionally, the mythology around artwork is a dramatic angst of hair pulling, addiction, depression, revelation and elation. There is validity in this model in the arts that embrace the soul-searching roller coaster. The angst of the artistic process is aggrandized as we are looking for something outside of that model, an allowing of the full spectrum of emotions while we cultivate a resilience through coherence. We need not be lost to art but rather create approaches of marking as a way to cultivate sensibilities by developing a different level of awareness and response. In HeartMath the state of coherence is associated with sustained positive emotion and a high degree of mental and emotional stability. As we are rewiring how we perceive the reality that we have created simple HeartMath techniques can be adapted for our process. This is not to flatline but to know coherence and have the awareness to recognize how it nurtures authenticity, creativity and innovation.
We are not going for a product at this stage, nor are we going for good, it’s working or even finished. It doesn’t mean that those feelings are not a part of what we do, but we are not making artwork with that kind of navigating. We are experimenting, exploring, changing habits developing new awareness. The first step is to realize when you are working the old stuff, which usually brings forth comments like; I don’t like it! It is dark, light, no values What does it need? Can I make it work? Etc. It is valuable to realize when you are in judgement, working a strategy or trying in any way. If you are identified with the work then it is not what we are doing. Instead, we are developing a new relationship with who we are and the collaborative work that we do-collaboratively as well as a sense of release from detachment that will allow us to look deeper as we move through the rest of these marking sessions.
One of the tools we use is poetry, which acts as a leverage to create a more nuanced context for our work. In the In-Bodying Marking we often use poetry to shift out of the everyday mind and find that the use of words can extend our ideas beyond the literal. Jane Hirshfield’s short Ted Talk shows how this works as she asks how do metaphors help us better understand the world? And, what makes a good metaphor? she explores these questions with writers like Langston Hughes and Carl Sandburg, who have mastered the art of bringing a scene or emotion to life.
In exploring gravity & levity for a future In-Body marking session again the Great Bear emerges from my painting. It is not so much as the quality of poetry but the experience with the secondary process, which will be brought forward in another blog.
Tacking into the Wind by Majio
Great Bear with delicate feathered wings
holds me to his will for neuroplasticity
teasing me with dopamine until like Pavlov’s dog
my vision narrows and I am a circus two-stepping-bear
who I cried for as a child at the Russian Circus
The only motivation is survival and that is dim and twisted
my mind is no opponent, yet my animal body lurches
beyond the myopic blinders to slide from under the weight
to move until dancing takes hold, it is not fun it is not easy.
Markings first show from where I have come
then where I am…..way becomes the path
I tack into the wind