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Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Cup of Abundance

pencil drawing -by Stephanie Tihanyi (copyright held by artist)
'Water is life's matter and matrix, mother and medium. There is no life without water.'  Albert Szent-Gyorgyi -Hungarian Biochemist (1937 Nobel Prize for Medicine, 1893-1986)
Please allow me to share my drawing with you. I worked from a memory of a dream I had of an Angel sitting at a fountain well with a cup.
The cup seemed to contain a fluid essence from some sort of fountain that welled up from the ground into a shallow pool. There were lots of people being given out sips from the cup by the angel. I found myself at the back of the large crowed in the dark, as I had come to this place late. I hung about patiently waiting my turn and the crowd eventually diminished,  and then suddenly I was at the front. I found myself in the illuminated glow of the seated creature. I looked around the place was empty, I was the last person. The pool was now drained but the angel still held out the cup to me. The cup looked empty and I held out my hand hoping there would be at least be a bit left for me. The angel completely tipped the cup up
and one single drop fell onto my palm. I was saddened, I began to fret, I felt tears rising because I had missed out, what could I possibly get from this mere little drop. I watched in dismay as the drop fell between my fingers and began to disappear!  Oh no! I put my head forward and dipped my tongue into the remains and a golden light burst into my being, transforming everything, flooding my being with peace and comfort. I looked at the Angel and it did not look up or speak, there was no need for words, the message given was clear. The gift of transformation was equal whether one got a droplet or a whole cupful, it would have been no greater of smaller.  I was given a lesson in this dream. Its not the quantity or how much you get or are blessed with, what is important is that you grasp and understand the essence of life, demonstrated but the act of the angel (higher self) and that essence is love, which in turn gives the power of self: transformation, renewal, intuition, reflection, subconscious and purification.



Sunday, September 1, 2013

New Art Work- 'A Mote In Gods Eye'

Its not easy to paint a vast sub-atomic universe. I am currently doing a triptych and am 2 thirds through the first one. Just only now, feeling a little daunted about the amount of work its going to take me. I know some of the best illustrator/artists undertake projects that last months, so got to stay focused and disciplined , will give updates as work progresses.

I am no daughter of the soil, I am not from here, I am, but dust, stellar dust, but, "A mote in Gods eye" a small corner detail of current painting I am working on -  August 19th

Its about looking for a place to call home, a place to feel you truly belong but when you find there is none and you never feel you belong anywhere, you begin to realize, that you belong to the cosmos. I am working hard to finish it.


                             detail of painting- 'A Mote in Gods Eye'  
                             by StephanieTihanyi (copyright held by artist)

Working hard very day, painting every spare minuet, it seems the more I work on this painting the more mystery it reveals for me to paint- Aug 19th

         detail of painting- 'A Mote in Gods Eye' by Stephanie Tihanyi
                                                                (copyright held by artist)

Well I have been working hard, painting on and off during the week and Saturday and Sunday, sometimes at 2pm into the night, still working on my latest painting, 'A Mote in Gods Eye' . Here is a small detail on the upper corner, 'space and time curves around a gravitational well as a cradle of new yellow stars just avoid being caught up in it due to their velocities. - Sept 1

My Gallery is No More

Its been a month since I came back from my summer vacation. The first one I took in five years.  I took it just after I closed my gallery in May, this year 2013. I started the gallery at the beginning of 2012 with two (ceramic) artists friends. We were always complaining about the lack of galleries on the island and I thought, hey, lets stop complaining and do something for ourselves. We could run a co-operative. So we did.

 The sales for the newly opened gallery were good at the beginning. I understood it takes time and a lot of work to build up a reputation but believed if we all work equally together, we could do it. Unfortunately in the first 3 months one artist pulled out, due to being unable to understand this concept.

We found another artist (painter) to share but she was about to have a baby and could not attend in the gallery often. Then as soon as we hit low season and the sales dropped, the other artist quit as well. I felt angry and disappointed. I had made an error in judgment about going into business with others. I had to find a third artist to share the space but the artists that applied only wanted me to be the gallery owner, who sells their work, while they create in their studios. I had an option to quit then and there but pure stubbornness wouldn't let me. I continued to pay 2/3rds of the rent and running of the gallery. I felt little support from other artists. Feedback from visitors was great. Our open nights were a disappointment with only 5 people turning up, we found little local support. Sometimes it seems that people like to see you fail because you are doing something they would like to but don't have enough passion to do..
(copyright held by artist)

 It was a struggle getting rent through the low season. There are times no one walks in all day or you can go weeks without a sale. Cash was in short supply, dinner was often sandwiches and I shelved medical treatment for a knee injury to keep the gallery open. I often sat all day and also in the evenings, till 9.30pm. When there were no sales, I had to find freelance sign work to pay the rent. I hated owing rent, I never had debts and I hated even being a week behind in rent.

I kept going because I don't like giving up and I felt many people assumed I was going to fold as soon as the other artists quit on me. I did not want to give anyone that satisfaction. The other artists then put work by the gallery of an influential, well established and extremely competitive local (painter) artist.  Some artists kept asking me to sell their work but I had no intention of playing gallery owner for others. Well meaning friends advised me to introduce other products, like clothes, jewelry and cheap crafts into the gallery and so effectively turn it into a store. I was dismayed that people around me just did not get it. I am an artist first. Apart from the overseas visitors, its often seems I am the only one who sees herself as that, so its a good thing I never do give up. Eventually of course, my work, mood and creativity started to decline. I tried to remedy this by doing my painting in the gallery but was constantly getting up and attending to potential buyers and worrying about the end of every month rent to pay. It just exhausted me. I thought if I could just make it to the season, it will be worth it.

Well, 2013 came with a disappointment, not just for me but for everyone. Tourism numbers were really down, and those that did come where afraid to spend because of the economy.  Many locals complained in the street fairs and markets. By the end of the season in April, and with another low season looming, I decided to call it quits, I was depressed. I had to find a new way forward but it was becoming clear it was not here and it was not like this. The feedback I got over the two years from the visitors to the gallery on my work, was very encouraging and greatly added to my confidence in the quality and honesty of my work. It helped to hold me up good, when the air of cold competiveness and indifference I felt often around me got me down and doubting myself. I pick up emotional energy in  a room very quickly and it can leave me anxious. Its just this way when you are a highly sensitive person, you absorb all things from people, the good and the not so good vibes. (Something, I am learning to protect myself from). My co partner artist, did not want me to close but as she could not put more support into the gallery to help, financially or in hours, I could not sustain my enthusiasm for it any longer, I had to tell her, I was sorry, I was tired.

I had a bunch of mixed feelings at closing. On one hand, I was no longer sleeplessly worrying at 2 in the night over rent due, it was a great relief, but then I also hate to quit things. I like to think I am not a quitter, I am a fighter, I soldier on . But I still felt like a loser. Why? I still had this voice in my head telling me I was useless, cant make nothing work. So I left the island and traveled hiking and climbing, biking in England, Germany, Italy and Mallorca. As I had never climbed before and had a fear of heights in adulthood, (though not in childhood), it was very wonderfully therapeutic for me to regain a sense of achievement.

It wasn't until I thought more deeply about it my gallery, I realized I was not giving up, Times were hard but at least I had shown some balls. I learnt that sometimes, the thing you try to avoid the most, is the best thing that can happen to you. I gave into and accepted change. I learnt some lessons, grown a bit more and arrived at a time, where I have more freedom to work on, transform and develop my art beyond a level I have never attempted before. I am depressed no more, I am excited about my artwork once again.