‘I paint what I like and when I like’ David Hockney
The freedom that is permitted to creatives when they apply full dedication to their profession and careers is something I see as the ultimate goal in life. This idea of personal activism and the exploration of the self, which goes deeper than selfish decisions or frivolous actions, is one that interests me endlessly. In a talk by Tracey Emin that I attended in December, she said ‘look after yourself and you can look after hundreds of people’. It is not a case of making selfish decisions that negatively impact others, it is about loving and respecting yourself enough that you do not make decisions that harm each other. Using the the theory of nature vs nurture, you can argue that the consequences of negative experiences in childhood lead to actions in adults that otherwise would not behave in this way; whether that be world leaders making globally affected decisions or events happening in a microcosm of society, each event is a domino effect on another. In which case, if this idea of loving yourself to help others is true it really does highlight the need for personal activism; the recognition that activism must begin truly in your own mind and kindness can only be perpetuated if one is kind to themselves.