Wednesday, December 5, 2012


Awhile back another young artist emailed me. She was newly in NYC and trying to make it happen, she asked me how I did it? How I managed to survive, make my work, have a kiddo do all that is done. Normally I love when people write me and am prompt in responding but this one it made me want to avoid, avoid, avoid, avoid.  I thought to myself if only she knew... if only she knew?

I am someone who always wants to inspire others, make them believe in themselves, their art, their path. So I just could not respond. How could I? I felt like nothing was happening and felt stuck, frustrated, alone- and she was asking me for advice? (I sort of still feel that way.)

We all are just trying we all are just attempting to live this life with our hearts.  In truth the last year has been the absolute worst of my life, even though my work has been doing great.  It is such a struggle  right now to make my work, write on this blog, apply for one more freaking job that I almost get but don't.  But the way I make it happen is I show up. Even though the last thing I want to do sometimes is pick up my work I know that in those moments it is often the best thing that I can do. Make, create, share.  This is who I am, this is what I do- and I am luckier then most because I know that.

I wish I had more energy and time to be here on these pages. I wish I had more time alone in my studio- but that is just not what life is giving me right now. And I was very lucky life gave me a lot of that over the last 5 years.

Sometimes, I get confused about the role of this blog. It started initially as a very diaristic experiment, then it became almost like a research project, then a way to help my career and build community and then I just did not know. I was writing and sharing about artists but was unsure as to why.
But now I remember the point of this blog- i has always been for me as a place to share, a place to have a voice, a place to celebrate the shit, the mess and the beauty of making art and life.

So maybe right now I am being a little bit less of a critical/intellectual voice. Finding less art to write about. But in truth I just don't want to look at art right now. I want to read about it, write about it, think about it. But not search for it. I want it to come find me. That is what I must do.

I hope you will all still come and say hello, stay awhile, share, and comment. But if the point of this blog is to be honest. Well honestly this is what I wanted to say today.


juli said...

Honestly, the posts about how you are doing in your work and your life are the most interesting to me. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy reading about and being exposed to the art and exhibits that you critique and write about. But the most interesting subject for me is how other artists work- what inspires them, how they schedule their time, what motivates them to show up, etc. Because in the end, we are all just people trying to express ourselves through our art while also dealing with many of the same life issues. It's comforting to know that someone else out there is going through the same things. Just sharing your story(through your words and your art)is enough to make you an inspiration to others.

elizabeth said...

hi Joetta -- this was so beautiful. I read your blog all the time and rarely comment-- I am sorry about that as it is such a treasure of inspiration for me-- let's find time in 2013 to connect for coffee or tea? sending you all best, elizabeth

Judy Martin said...

I often have the same questions about blogging as you have stated here.

I am at the same place in my self-doubt-need to work-can't care what others think but also need to share - as you are, I think.

You are much younger than I am and live in a bigger city - but so much of what you say here, in this post, is really really true for so many.

Be brave. carry on.

hannalietaute said...

Your blog is fantastic. I'm so glad I found it- and that you started it....will keep on checking in regularly!

Emily Barletta said...

Hey Joetta,

I've felt the same way quite recently. Don't be hard on yourself, it will pass and then it will probably come back again later. It's particularly hard when people ask for advice. I never feel like they should be asking me. Thanks for sharing.

Kelly Darke said...

thank you for being so honest - I have also felt the same way recently. Sometimes it's not easy to get up and keep working - but I'm glad I do - and I'm glad you do.

slkrueg said...

Your blog is always inspiring. I like how it is a fluid thing like a meandering stream, sometimes rushing, sometimes going in a different course. It's good to hear about your struggles because we know we're not alone in this imperfect and often impersonal world. It's also helpful to learn about other artists; I don't feel so isolated in my small city, altho sometimes it's good to hide out from the craziness. Thanks for whatever you do. Wishing you strength!

Joetta M. said...

i simply want to say THANK YOU~

Alisha said...

I'm late to this post, likely a testament to feeling much like you, overwhelmed and not up for it. Just searching for time to productively work on art but having trouble climbing over the fence built of job searching, self-doubt, and just not knowing what to do next. Thank you for always being honest on your blog and more importantly in your work. I am sorry to know that you are in a rough stretch. You're in it, will come through it, and will be stronger on the other side.

Best wishes to you always!