Creators, we need your strength today

by Joanna Pieters | Follow her on Facebook here

I know many of us this week are puzzled. Hurt, or aching, or fearful. Perhaps angry with a world that we don’t feel we belong in.

But know this.

As a creator, your voice has never been more important.

You have energy that the world needs, right now. Energy that can change lives, if you only choose to do so.

So grieve, if grief calls you. Be angry, if that is what your mind tells you.

But then turn that energy into creating and re-creating.

We need your creativity in all its forms. Creativity that uplifts, motivates and inspires. Creativity that brings together communities and individuals. Creativity that solves practical problems. Creativity that gives people a focus that is positive and active, not an energy that drags us down.

We need all the resources we have, and we can’t afford not to be resilient. We need to weave our own cloth of strength to wrap ourselves in.

  • If you’re feeling disconnected, go and find someone else and come up with a hundred ways you could work together to make something.
  • If you’re feeling deflated, find art that is waiting for you and give it life. Music needs an audience, books need readers, art needs viewers to make them complete. Be that co-creator.
  • If you’re feeling lost, don’t worry about your overall life purpose. Work out one small thing you can do today to make the world better. A smile, an expression of gratitude, a small sketch, a sharing of music or art that you love.
  • If everything seems chaotic, embrace it. Use it to trust that you can’t yet see the patterns that you will do.
  • Take control. Don’t wait to be asked. Go and create. Give love. Be the change you want to see in the world.

Last night I went to see Lulu, the opera by Alban Berg, composed in 1935 in a Germany already descending deep into darkness. It’s part tawdry melodrama, part extraordinary modernist musical creation, and in a riveting new production by artist and film-maker William Kentridge. In the midst of murder, betrayal, and lust was an extraordinary creative experience: the total commitment of artists, musicians, dancers, designers, themselves standing on the shoulders of creative giants, and creating nearly four hours of utterly riveting drama. I came out uplifted and even joyful, and grateful to every one of the community of those who made it happen, no matter what pain they felt themselves.

Creators, we need you. Be brave. Be strong. Be practical. 

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  1. Michelle

    What a manifesto – I love it. Thanks for articulating what drives my actions so clearly.

    • Joanna Pieters

      Thanks Michelle – we need energy like yours in the world!

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