Rhys Exposed

Stories and stuff from the mind of Michael Rhys




Well, beyond the obvious reason that short, easily remembered .com website names are getting harder to find, I felt '' really did express something about me that was, well, short and easily remembered.

This is a personal website. It's about me, and unless I'm willing to actually put something close to the real me on here then it isn't really worth the pixels it's written on. And being genuine and real involves a certain amount of exposure don't you think?

But exposing one's creative output to every random passing stranger is asking for trouble.

So, I guess I'm asking for trouble. 

A long time ago, when I had a gallery in the Ueno area of Tokyo, I was asked to participate in an open discussion on art as part of a panel on a radio show, though I forget the precise focus of the discussion. This was done at a restaurant in front of a live audience. I remember almost nothing of what was said, as discussions on art rarely yield anything of impact, but when the discussion was opened up to questions from the audience somebody asked...

"Why does an artist show his (or her) work?"

A simple enough question.

I don't remember what attempts at answers were made, and I'm pretty sure I didn't even try, but that question has stayed with me for many, many years. It's one of those questions that seems simple at first hearing, but upon later contemplation leads one down so many rabbit holes it becomes a portal to bouts overthinking misery.

The only thing I can come up with as a quick answer is that humans tell stories. It's what we do, all the time, in an effort to have some kind of answer to things we don't know. Having knowledge is all very well, but having the knowledge that we actually don't have knowledge is what drives us the most. There are simple evolutionary benefits to such thinking, of course. Having to come to a conclusion about whether a noise, a shadow or some unkown thing is a threat to life or not requires the telling of a story, the weighing of probability. And now, with our incredibly complex lives, we continue to do that. We still turn limited reality into expansive stories. To make a decision about what is going on, even if we won't ever truly know. 

We make up our own truth to satisfy that itch. That fear of the dark.

We share those stories because we are stronger as a group.

So I tell stories in various guises.

And in doing so, reveal a little more each time.

And try to be as genuine and real as I can be.

Or is that just another story?




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