What is art?
If you ask Erin Stephens-North to describe art, her description may surprise you. For Erin, art is the signs she creates for Trader Joe’s (and who isn't impressed with the creativity you see at TJ's!?). Also, it's is the paintings she exhibits in her solo shows. In contrast, it might be a street performance, a conversation or even a vision.
Speaking of visions
As a recent college graduate, Erin experienced hallucinations, visions and manic episodes. Eventually, she was diagnosed with Schizoaffective Disorder. Erin joins The Brave Files to talk about art as a bridge between what she calls “consensus-view reality” and the visions that have colored her adult life.
Today, Erin continues to step over the chasm of fear and open herself up to sharing her art with others. Thankfully, she no longer feels shy about her work or afraid to make “mistakes.”
Without a doubt, art saved Erin's life.
With gratitude, art gives Erin a mission. It also continues to shape her everyday reality. Don't wait, tune in today to hear this inspiring story in Erin's own words. Additionally, you can learn more about Erin on her website.
One last thing, be sure to listen through to the end of the episode to hear Erin's “on the fly poetry.” She created this piece for Heather and it is a highlight.
Since I interviewed Erin she became active in a hometown political campaign. She writes: “It's quite apropos to mention that I am the Field Director for the Chris Tribou for State Representative Campaign in Billerica, Massachusetts. If you're interested in Massachusetts politics or live in Massachusetts (especially in Billerica), look into Chris's Campaign! He's a progressive, thoughtful, compassionate candidate working to serve all Billerica and Massachusetts residents.”
A NOTE FROM ERIN:
I’VE WORKED TO MAKE ART MY LIFE.
I believe, art is novelty and joy. Art brings hope and it uplifts. Truthfully, bravery and art always come together because great art flows from vulnerability. Hence, performance is ultimately my favorite “art” and extends into every little human interaction.Luckily, this interest in vulnerability informs my on-the-fly poetry (hear this live at the end of the episode!). Also, you'll find my work and the improvisational abstracts on Instagram and my Artist’s Site. Lastly, in the grand scheme, if art isn’t there, it’s probably boring.In all my art – painting, performance, photography, writing – I evoke that “whoa that just happened?” feeling. Ideally, my life is, and will continue to be, my greatest work.