ARTISTS: ISSUE 7
IMAGE BY ASHANI DUNWELL
"These artworks are amalgamations of the sacred, immovable fixtures of my identity: my imagined, transitioned body and my warm, fleeting memories of safety and hope. My journeys from Dogmatic christian-to-Spiritualist buddhist and confused kid-to-closeted boy are best characterized as tumultuous journeys of disillusionment and dysphoria. The unparalleled chaos and labor I’ve put into my identity has given me the gift of a more holistic vision of my relationship with time. Although I don’t believe in tethering myself to a specific artistic style, I do think that, with more artistic and intellectual experiments, my 눈치 (sense) grows more distinct and my origins more defined as these final years of adolescence draw to a close.
Now, as a burgeoning online artist, it is difficult for me to separate roles as an artist and curator. I struggle to maintain a tolerable level of integrity as I search for my audience. But, rather paradoxically, growing as an artist/influencer entitles a certain degree of deliberate embarrassment. Spending time being annoying, obnoxious, confused, and LOUD has been an incredibly important transitional period for me. I am no longer ashamed or afraid of my art, my image, or my voice. I have surfaced every undignified thought, ugly angle, and deepest fear and I’m still here.
In these next couple of months, as I move towards my freedom, I’m feeling an inner synchronicity that I’ve only heard whispers of in an imagined/remembered childhood.
The days when I live in real time, in my real body, are coming sooner than I’ve anticipated, and I’m beyond ready."