July 28, 2011

Duende– A word and concept that I am trying to become friends with… key word here is “trying”


El duende is the spirit of evocation. It comes from inside as a physical/emotional response to music. It is what gives you chills, makes you smile or cry as a bodily reaction to an artistic performance that is particularly expressive (from Wikipedia)

My reality- My struggle

Duende- I have been reading The Demon and the Angel: Searching for the Source of Artistic Inspiration, Hirsch, Edward (2003) and have been exploring its meaning and how it applies to me and my artwork. Though I must admit I have this fear that being a blue eyed white boy from Indiana that my Duende may have passed me by for someone more interesting.

When I was growing up we didn’t talk about the bad things or the “dark” side of the story. I was taught that if you focus only on the good things, only good things will happen to you.  We repressed the bad things… no one talked about the pink elephant sitting in the corner sipping tea and eating ginger snaps; he simply was not really there, enuff said!

I was fighting with myself about the idea that my artwork could have a darkside, in my mind this meant that it was negative( you know… postive means GOOD, negative means BAD).  Here I was feeling like Glinda, the good witch making everyone  happy…there is no room for anything but good things in my world… skipping around  tossing  flower petals up in the air (ok, so really it was fairy dust…what can I say).  But for me, after I was able to chilled out about the judgement and the personal slam I felt to my character.  I have come to terms with Duende and how it seems to fit into my world.  Duende is the shadow of the soul, maybe even my soul, the quiet space between my inhalation and the exhale of breath.  So maybe I need to change my perception and not see this as a struggle, but approach my Duende and ask if he would like to dance… music please.


There is the saying that…    “The brighter the light, the darker and shadows”  which means that they are equal.


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