Finding me – Inge’s story

Why identity matters

When we’re looking for identity, we often end up in a maze of made-up possibilities.  It can be exhausting.  And, especially in the world we live today, it is so easy to become whomever we want to become.  After all, who will know if we fake it.  Right?

Wrong.

You will know. It is exhausting to try and keep up with who you think you should be.  It is so draining, that it will surely suck the life out of you.  Trying to find your voice and your “true self” is very contradicting, as it is something which forever changes.  But,

there is hope.

Because the core of who we are, is ever fixed.  You are created with beautiful purpose and clarity.  You just have to sit down and find it.

The creative process

In my journey to discover authentic identity, I realized that art (in whichever form) has had an amazing part to play in my formation.  It is often in the expression of ourselves, that we are able to find ourselves.

I had a talk with a beautiful artist and friend who shared her journey with me.

1)  What does art mean to you?

Art is a way of communicating thoughts and emotions or ideas in a way that is different to what we are used to.  Art is also a way to tell stories.  Art inspires me to be moved or to move others to see things differently.  It inspires me to look at things in a new and fresh way.

2)  What does art add to your life?

It adds moments of beauty to life.

I love how I can walk down a busy road in Cape town, after a long day at work, heading somewhere in a hurry, in the hustle and bustle of everything, and then, suddenly, my eye catches a beautiful piece of art in a window.  It brings me to a complete stop.  That’s what art does for me, it reminds me to stop.  To catch my breath and enjoy the beauty.

3)  How has art helped to form and shape your identity?

I did this one specific painting about 2 and a half years ago.  It is titled “He makes something out of nothing.”  I decided to become an artist when I was 8 years old.  It happened after I saw a pottery piece that one of my friends made in her art class.

It amazed me that something as beautiful as that art piece could have been made out of nothing. I thought that it would just be a fleeting observation, however, 17 years later, while I was creating this painting, God led me back to that thought.  I realized that He has actually been trying to tell me something since I was 8 years old.  I realized that even though I felt like I was nothing, He was making something beautiful out of me.

That revelation has formed a lot of who I am today.

4)  In what way has art given you a voice?

Well, in a way it has given me more than one voice.  The one is that I get to speak truth through my art.  My hope is that the art I create will keep on speaking truth into the lives of people whom I may never meet.

It has also given me the opportunity, literally, to speak to a multitude of people, which is really cool!  These are people whom I might never have approached before, but because of my art, I am inspired to share who I am with them.

The reality

Not all of us are artists.  And even if we are, we might not be as good as someone else.  However, that’s not the point.  The point is that by expressing ourselves, through art, we might often be surprised at what comes out.  And it is in this result of our art, that we are able to discover some small part of who we are.

For more art from Inge, visit her Facebook page.

To read more on Identity, visit this post.

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