message in a bottle... (2020)

mixed media on canvas (acrylic, paper, charcoal, felt, soft pastels)

Artist Statement


So… what are you saying?


Near the end of last year, I had enough… enough of living on a hamster wheel, repeating the same cycle over and over again… I had moved to another whole country to get off the wheel, but found myself right back on another one… I was ready to break free, to get out of this container that I had inherited… Or did I actually put myself in it?


So what am I saying?


I spent many years of my life being closed… and many years saying no… and for what? To keep up appearances with my family and friends? To fashion myself into someone that I thought I should be?


While taking a painting class one day, the instructor told us to paint a picture of a bottle… I found the perfect one… while painting I decided to add a few elements to it and it ended up with lips inside… (I’m a sucker for lips, especially if they look like mine)… then my spirit spoke to me and, on the canvas, I begin to write the words, BE OPEN…


I stepped back and looked at it, finding it completely oxymoronic… a closed bottle… it spoke to me…


There it was, a message longing to get out… a story longing to be told… a message so misshapen by its container that it forgot what it was supposed to say, how it was supposed to look… it forgot who it was and there it was, stuck…


So what am I saying?


From that moment forward, I challenged myself to be more open… whenever I am at a crossroads or facing something new, I speak those words over myself and allow it to be my spirits cry… as a result, I can honestly say that I’ve had many more meaningful experiences and have come to know myself and others in new ways…


By being open, I’m allowing my message to live, to love, and to be free… by being open, Im allowing my message to have a voice and to be heard- or not… because while people don’t have to listen, your message is so important that you still have to speak…


This series is my reminder that you have a message… that you are a message… and that by being open, you liberate your message, and consequently, you liberate your entire world…


So what are you saying? 


Tye Johnson Artistry, Inc. (NFP) Home Page

 © 2020 by Tye Johnson

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