Tuesday, December 28, 2010
I have a confession to make. I am absolutely obsessed with North African dance and music. I cannot get enough of it. When I'm doing it, I feel like YES! THIS IS WHAT IT IS ALL ABOUT! (And while I had been introduced to bits and pieces of it over the years from many different instructors, it was Amel who really helped me come to this realization, but that will be for another post...)
But inquiring minds ask, what does that have to do with Gothic or Dark Bellydance? I think the inquiring are often so busy looking at the labels and the surface conditions that they rarely look below the surface and the stereotypes. I don't work from the outside in, I work from the inside out. In all things. Nor am I one to play the who's the darkest, ookiest, spookiest biatch on the block, because I just don't own that much make-up (nor do I give a rat's patootie). ;)
But sometimes I forget that I'm weird - as in, I'm a bit odd, especially in how I think. Recent case in point: I was selling my wares at the alumni holiday sale for RISD (Rhode Island School of Design), and we all know that art students are pretty weird/out there kind of people. (And if you don't know this, you should.) And I'm looking at my fellow alums' work, and I'm gauging customers' reactions, and I sort of slipped out of my head for a moment to see how other people view what was in my booth.
In between an "upcycle" clothing booth and raku pottery is a rack of corseted items, a pile of darkly-colored lush ruffle things, dramatic looking hooded scarves on 20's looking heads, an array of jewelry featuring animal skulls and imagery, and flowers with eyeballs in them. And owls. Folks, this is some seriously weird shit going on. MY seriously weird shit. In a room full of artsy crazy people, I was still pretty far out there. But I'm so immersed in what I consider normal for me, I never even think about "pushing buttons", "shock factor", or "edgey" - cause weird IS my mundane. It's THAT intrinsic for me.
So, what does that say? That pretty much everything I do, comes through my own weird filter. Whether that makes it "dark", "Gothic" or any other adjective, isn't really the point. The point is, it comes sincerely from my heart and soul. As it should!
So, there's the first (part 1) factor to consider. What's going on inside the individual. Part 2, I'd like to talk about culture and dark tendencies.