Dale Evers: Finding meaning and creativity in the midst of this crisis
Pondering the pros and cons of COVID-19 lockdown
By Dale Evers
–Damn, this nasty virus hit us all by surprise. Other than the fact that everybody’s drinking way too much during the lockdown, there are other elements of the effect that I would like to touch on.
I’ve been searching myself desperately to find the positive aspects of the lockdown. I think the best thing to come out of this whole pandemic is the time I have spent with myself getting to know who I am again… I’m sure many of you relate.
I have come to realize how much I like people, even the ones I dislike. We all need each other: left, right, gay, straight, rich, poor, and anything else that comes to your mind. There is a side of all of us that wants to dismiss our need for other humans because, after all, we’re kind of quirky and difficult. Somewhere in the imperfection, we find common ground and we strive to be better.
I’m always challenged by my own 800-pound gorilla question… are humans inherently good or evil? Well, it’s complicated. Truth be known we’re all angels and we’re all demons. It sort of makes sense that I relate to the feelings of others because I realize how significant my own failings are.
But here’s the thing, when I see genuine kindness and genuine love for fellow humans I’m deeply touched. It is true, we are all in this together; that is this human experience thing. Without going into an entirely different subject I would like to point out my favorite dislike of humans: most people love to think that they are smarter than you, it’s just how our minds work or our insecurities function. The most disgusting people, in my opinion, are generally highly educated people who see themselves as smarter or better than others. I call them the educated elite. My time spent in Mexico dealing with the poor, the craftsman, the downtrodden, has given me a wonderful perspective… we are all in this boat together.
I’m sorry for the little detour. So back to the COVID-19 thing. I have been seeing some posts from my friends and they’re speaking to there newfound passion for painting. I’m seeing people posting on how they’re finally getting back into their art. I’m seeing people getting back to things that have abstract meaning such as the visual arts and music and so on. Seriously, our creative side needs to be nurtured and this ministers to our entire being. Being locked up gives us the time to discover more about our creative selves.
For me as an established American artist, I personally got fixated on the idea of time. For many years, perhaps a decade I have been obsessed with the idea of building a grandfather clock, but “Not Your Grandfather’s Clock “ so I have been working what I call the lockdown project. I worked on some gruesomely rough sketches of a grandfather clock eight-feet tall. I told myself, just use the sketch as a guideline but feel free to create the craziest grandfather clock in the world. That’s the way I think… everything I do I want to be the best in the world. Such a dark time to aspire for excellence.
The streets were bare and the zombies were lurking, I was depressed but I was determined to build this clock more as a distraction that a function of creativity. I realized we all doing what we need to do to get through this…not just COVID-19, but the entire human ordeal. This was my way to press on to something bigger than myself and I must say I am proud of the outcome.
What a crazy obsession. Who in their right mind would spend two months and thousands of dollars to create a grandfather clock that really isn’t my grandfather’s clock? My business partner looked at me and said we’re never going to sell this in this economy and I agreed. But what I didn’t factor in was passion… when you pour your absolute being into something and it’s eccentric and beautiful, it always seems to work out.
I posted a photo of the completed project on social media and much to my surprise someone else connected to the eccentric passion and they wanted a piece of that muse. It wasn’t even on the market for a week when these angels came and purchased my passion. I love it when my life has meaning.
– Dale Evers is a sculptor, designer, underwater photographer, author, teacher, and an eccentric human being.