Tag Archives: cute

Cute is the new black.

It feels as if I have not posted a new blog for ages… Even though I have promised myself to just write and share things when I really feel called to it, I do also feel a bit guilty, when I neglect my blog and all you wonderful followers.

And the longer I do not get to write, the more difficult it is to decide what to write about. There are so many things I dream of sharing with you, so much art just waiting to be seen and ideas I would love to let out of the cage of my skull.

(Click on the images to see a larger version of the artwork.)

Today’s choice has been influenced by a dream I had in the night. I almost never had repeating dreams, but it was the fourth time I dreamed about a similar situation: A little colourful bird comes flying up to me, right up to my face. Without any fear, instead with full intention, trust and love. It then kind of snuggles up to my face, always on the left side, and I can feel its soft feathers, the lightness of their touch and a mix between the warmth of such a small body and the coolness of the stirred air around their wings. Every time I am surprized by this unusual behaviour and feel so honoured and happy to experience it. I wish I knew what this means!

So, in honour of the little dream birds, I will share with you a series of works on paper depicting small birds. I started painting them in a whimsical mood two weeks ago.

I shared them on my Facebook page and while some people really liked them I also got a remark by a fellow artist (whom I do not know personally) saying: Kitsch as kitsch goes…

Well, yes. It took me a lot of time to be okay with such comments. And still I get a tiny bit insecure, as I have been filled up with all these preconceived ideas of where I should fit into the art world, and kitsch was/is generally frowned upon.

But I have to admit, I have found that there is a part of me, which just feels as happy as a little playful and carefree girl, when I create or see cute, pretty sweetness, adorable animals or some gooey fairy tale magic. Yes, sometimes that gives me the warm and fuzzy feeling, which I need to submerge in every now and then, to feel complete.

I love what Amanda Palmer had to say about creating art:

“People working in the arts engage in street combat with The Fraud Police on a daily basis, because much of our work is new and not readily or conventionally categorized. When you’re an artist, nobody ever tells you or hits you with the magic wand of legitimacy. You have to hit your own head with your own handmade wand. And you feel stupid doing it.

There’s no “correct path” to becoming a real artist. You might think you’ll gain legitimacy by going to university, getting published, getting signed to a record label. But it’s all bullshit, and it’s all in your head. You’re an artist when you say you are. And you’re a good artist when you make somebody else experience or feel something deep or unexpected.”

I am getting better and better at just listening inward to who I am and what my needs are and follow them. Not caring too much about the opinion or reaction of others. I am proud of that! And I love that I can do it all in my creative expression: serious art, political art, big, small, land art, installations, drawings, prints and warm and fuzzy sweetness. After all, there are no rules. Really.

And maybe you can also use a bit of adorable cuteness and lightness in your life today?

(Click on the images to see a larger version of the artwork. Oh, and in case you do not know: all my work is for sale, unless stated otherwise. And I happily ship to anywhere in the world. )

Taking my goldfish for a swim in the snow

I desperately needed to cheer myself up… The sunless grey days of German winter needed some warmth and the beautiful white landscapes some colour.

Fortunately I brought some really cute, really bright orange goldfish along from Namibia and decided to take them for a swim in unusual places.

Swimming in the snow ©Imke Rust

Swimming in the snow ©Imke Rust

Swimming in the snow ©Imke Rust

Swimming in the snow ©Imke Rust

Interventions like these are fun. And important. I slowly realize that these ‘small’ and playful things, which I am usually doing on the spur of the moment, are not that frivolous at all. I might just be following a hunch or a simple, but fascinating idea, at the time and only see the relevance to my life or the bigger picture later. And then I am surprised how these simple creative processes help me to make sense of my life and emotions.

Since I arrived in Berlin in the middle of February, I struggled to adjust to the cold and sunless weather here. Even though I have been regularly moving between the two continents and cultures for some time now, I am still not managing the change very well. I really enjoy Berlin and all that it has to offer, but I have to admit, as a born and bred Namibian I still feel like a fish out of water in Europe.

Flying Goldfish ©Imke Rust

Flying Goldfish ©Imke Rust

Taking my goldfish out into nature, letting them brighten up the day, wobble through the snow and glide up into the sky reminded me that I could choose to embrace the unease and stress I am experiencing because I am out of my comfort zone. To focus on the bright side and willingly submit to the growth-pains which are a necessary if we do not want to stay stuck in the same old rut. And to explore the advantages: more freedom to discover unusual and new things, having fun in simple ways and being able to see the world with a fresh and unconditioned mind.

And for a while the excitement of placing my cute goldfish all over the place and photographing them made me forget my unusually low tolerance to the cold and my gloomy mood. 🙂

Finding a trickle of flowing water ©Imke Rust

Finding a trickle of flowing water ©Imke Rust

Taking my goldfish for a swim ©Imke Rust

Taking my goldfish for a swim ©Imke Rust (Photograph by Steffen Holzkamp)