So this year for the Ni Mental Health Festival there was an open call for submissions based on the theme of 'Identity'. Identity can mean a number of different things to people and sometimes it can take a little time throughout your life, to develop an identity you feel comfortable with. Here I will discuss a little more of what identity means to me.
For me, my identity is about being true to who I am. For years I always felt very isolated and repressed who I truly wanted to be and what I wanted to do. I was at war with myself for I didn’t feel like I was being my true self. I had little confidence, felt like I wasn’t good enough and didn’t want to embrace my sexuality as I had a hard time with coming to terms with it mentally. Outside I would appear to be fun loving and outgoing, but inside it’s taken me some time to be that person. I was so against doing things within my society for I didn’t want to become a part of ‘the scene’ or be part of a click, but I now realise that I didn’t have to be a part of either of these things to be a part of queer culture.
Over the past couple of years I have taken some time out to explore queer culture and explore spirituality. Spirituality has become a huge part of who I am both as an artist and as a person. It has taught me that it’s ok to be who I am, love who I am and embrace it. It’s really helped ground me and to embrace my identity of being queer. I now identify primarily as queer and holistic, which has evolved fantastically through my art practice. I now know who I am and no longer feel isolated or scared.
This painting I have created is called ‘The Moonchild’. I am a Cancerian to which the moon is our ruling planet. My personality is about embracing my inner child which I have identified here. On a whole the most important outcome from all this is to love who you are, embrace your inner child, don’t take life so seriously and share the love you have with the rest of the world. Be proud of who you are and embrace it !
You can now check out 'The Moonchild' in the online exhibition here: https://www.nimhaf.org/identity-exhibition
Also take a look at all the activities and programmes happening throughout the festival !