Ideas matter.Visions, and gut feelings even more.
Days like today are the reminder that we should all follow our heart, dreams and ideas, no matter how futile they seem. Tonight is the opening of Latitude 34 at the Espace expression CDG in Rabat.
When I first had the idea of latitude 34, it was just an idea, but one I felt strongly about. Within a week I was o the road. I didn’t think, I acted. I had no budget, I wasn’t taking myself seriously, it was like a few of my body of work, ideas turned into creative action. This one took me further than a studio , and got me to shoot landscapes, something I had never been interested in.
There was another example in my life about something that started casually and took over my life, through action. That is training, becoming a personal trainer and training for competition, even boxing which also started through a photographic project. Me who was the unhealthiest weakest person I knew. A passion for the human body that I had as an artist turned into one as an athlete.
I had very little support at first for latitude 34, many thought it was a fun idea, but not more. My family didn’t take me seriously and thought I was nuts. They advised me to ” think bout it”, find sponsoring or some form of validation by backing. I come from a family where if you are not working in science, research, engineering or the likes, you are not serious. Lateral thinking, and not following “what everybody does” is not celebrated. Artisticly inclined? you may want to do architecture.You know something serious. Being a personal trainer was bad enough, especially with my unconventional approach and nutrition. To this day I have no credibilty talking about health. An artist oh god!
I didn’t listen, I just went. I didnt do it for the others , but by conviction it was something I had to do. I knew. It wasnt until very late in the project that I realised I was onto something.
After a show in Moroco about the first part of the project I realised I had to carry on. An artist doesnt always act based on a mercantile aspect , it comes at a by product. It comes from this demonstration of belief, dedication and passion on the long run. Just like training, one only reaps its benefits through time, hard sweat, dedication, discipline and follwoing through even when others tell you to give it a rest.
What started with an simple idea, a passion for words and images and linking concepts , datas together with affect to create something meaningful grew into something a lot more. It was hard at times, wonderfully liberating at others, it meant a lot of sacrifices , exhaustion at times. It was a travel through time and space, over a short period where I had to deliver content , fast and good, on the go. A fantastic learning curve that is leading me to their paths, other topics of research and body of work like the concept of home, or non placeness.
Passion is the fuel for life, happiness, success and growth. With its ups and downs, set backs and hardships, not everyone will believe in you balanced with incredible highs. The best part about the show today is that I didn’t pitch for it , it came to me. It’s nice to see my name on the wall for this project!
My message here is follow your dreams, your passions , and stay lighthearted, with the child like view of the world. You never know where your heart can take you, but you know when something is right and worth sticking with, fighting for.