When I paint, I'm aware of being both inside and outside of the work--aware that it comes from deep in my consciousness, but as an object it will be viewed by others without that reference point. In this way I'm a watcher or observer of my paintings even as I create them. And this element of detachment is certainly what allows me to exhibit and sell my work. It is by me and of me, but I recognize its "otherness" as well. My work (and anyone's work, I'm just writing in first-person here) has its own presence and identity in the world.
Maybe I'm getting a bit esoteric here...but I'm thinking of my upcoming solo show at Circa Gallery
. It's a shock, really, to see my very personal creations on public view when I arrive at the opening. All my solitary hours of frustration, pride, joy, deep thought and searching for how to express my true self...all of those stuggles, highs and lows are visible. It's really just a bit much, and I will admit to a strong urge to cover my eyes and run away screaming.
Fortunately this is when that sense of detachment kicks in, and allows me to go on in, meet and greet the people at the opening, and generally behave in a socially appropriate manner. I can look at the paintings objectively, almost as if they were made by someone else, a friend maybe...or someone I would like to meet. I'm sure we'd have a lot in common.