ISSUE #16 WE ARE OUR OWN MONUMENTS

It’s funny, when you move your attention onto a project or ambition, your mind starts to extract clues all around you to support it. Like our beautiful Notorious RBG said, “Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”

Now go get it!
– Sean


How We’re Feeling

We’re feeling seen; seen by my friend Ariel Kates who posted a quote by illustrator and storyteller Lynda Barry that literally took me on a fast paced adventure within the space of two hours without leaving my place. (see quote below)

Lynda Barry talks about illustration like I feel about my own creative flow at the moment. Like the bold circles that surround comics like Family Circus, Lynda talks about crossing into the circle. Meaning entering the supposedly fictional universe we can create with our own imaginations. She literally felt this when she was drawn into a scene by Family Circus creator Jeff Keane.

It can’t be a coincidence that we’re coming across the comic that features Lynda Barry in a joke about gender equality, the same week that our beloved American hero Ruth Badger Ginsberg has passed away.

Lynda Barry is a MacArthur genius grant recipient and newly discovered hero of mine. Her writing courses get you out of your head and into your physical body. There’s a great New York Times article about her work and creative process here.

From the article:
Barry isn’t particularly interested in the writer’s craft. She’s more interested in where ideas come from — and her goal is to help people tap into what she considers to be an innate creativity.

Narrative, Barry believes, is so hard-wired into human beings that creativity can come as naturally to adults as it does to children. They need only to access the deep part of the brain that controls that storytelling instinct. Barry calls that state of mind “the image world” and feels it’s as central to a person’s well-being as the immune system.

“I think that in the course of human life,” she continued softly, “we have events that cause” — she clenched her fist and held it up, inspecting it from all angles. “Losing your parents might cause it. Or a war. Or things going bad in a family.”

The only way to open that fist, she said, is to see your own trouble reflected in an image, as the patient saw his hand reflected in a mirror. It might be a story you write, or a book you read, or a song that means the world to you. “And then?” She opened her hand and waved.

You can find a playful interview with Lynda Barry here.


What We’re Making &
Who We’re Watching

This week these two topics are one in the same. In my efforts to lift-off Neon Fabrications, I’ve come across people and orgs that have been hiding in plain sight. This includes a group I only recently came across a few days ago called Monument Lab in Philadelphia. Turns out they have been working on the concept of redefining monuments in America since 2012!

While they are addressing this by means of the museum and academic arenas, they also have a fellows program supporting artists to create new works. And that’s where Neon Fabrications fits into the equation.

In time Neon Fabrications will provide the materials, the technical support, the space and all of the real life ‘matter’ and persons needed to materialize our ideas to share them with one another in this world. Understanding the joyful imagination of creative makers to be able to supply the grounded-ness we need to physically construct these ideas is where Neon Fabrications thrives. Thankfully time doesn’t exist, which means we’re already doing it!

In that respect, Sherri Lynn Wood from last week’s issue reached out to me. We had a video call together this week and have begun a collaboration to begin branding her website. Like I said, we’re already doing it and this gets me stoked!


“We don’t create a fantasy world to escape reality,
we create it to be able to stay.”
– Lynda Barry

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