Art often takes intense emotional experiences and translates them into colors and shapes. An artist often does this intuitively. An artist’s creations can often serve as a diary of sorts through which they illustrate their inner, emotional landscape. What often fuels an artist’s emotional landscape are the people they love. Thus an artists creations can be closely connected to their loved ones: those who inspire us and touch our hearts unlike anyone else. But what happens when a loved one’s life is severely threatened? How does that color the work of the artist who loves them?
Today I would like to tell you a little secret about my artwork: It is greatly influenced by the love I feel for my little sister, who has been diagnosed with a serious, incurable illness. Lulu was just beginning to blossom into a career of modeling, music and dance, when the illness struck. It nearly took her life twice. I will never forget the night my mother called me from a hospital in Paris to tell me that Lulu’s condition was unstable. I could not entertain the thought of ever living without her. Not for a second! My sister and I have been very close our entire life and I love her so deeply.
Over time, I have watched my sister brave her illness and show an amazing strength and hope that greatly invigorate my own practice of gratitude in life. Lulu has been such an unshakable inspiration for me! She has motivated me in both my art and my life, which are very closely linked. Lulu’s spirit often shines through my images, as I focus on themes that are dear to us both. Although Lulu can no longer model, or dance, due to her illness, I attempt to keep this part of her alive by exhibiting it in my self-portraits. This is one reason I never show my face; so that Lulu can feel free to imagine herself in my artwork whenever she wishes to! I try to create worlds in my art that Lulu and I always dreamed of living in together. Worlds of music, and beauty, and magic!
I believe that it takes nearly mystical abilities to face life with a smile on a daily basis, while struggling with an incurable illness. Well, my sister Lulu is a true mystic, because this is what she does! She has been a tremendous influence and inspiration for me in my life. For this reason, I was especially touched when my friend, artist Jared Knight, informed me that his sister, Tamara, had also been a huge inspiration to him, and that she also suffered from an incurable illness. Jared then invited me to donate one of our artistic collaborations for a cure for cancer! What a wonderful idea! So we did!
We decided to wait until this month of October, as it’s International Breast Cancer Awareness month, to launch our art auction. The colorful art piece, entitled “Hope”, is on auction for ten days only on , sponsored by the
Susan G. Komen for The Cure Foundation