I’ve been without power since Monday. In order to connect to power sources and internet, I’ve had to be resourceful. Many businesses have opened their doors to those of us without electricity. Bookstores, fire houses, gyms – they have all been quite generous in lending a helping hand.
Many people seem annoyed by this change of pace. I’ve been enjoying myself quite a bit. No distractions! One thing I’ve been doing to entertain myself is catching up on reading. Right now, I’m reading Significant Others: Creativity & Intimate Partnership.
This book is a series of essays that explores the relationships of great artists. It is an attempt to understand how gender, creativity, and partnership influence art. Writing and painting take place in a sort of isolation, the privacy of a studio or home. But what happens when to great writers or artists form a relationship? How does this collaboration that happens behind closed doors affect the creative process? Can they both be geniuses? Or is on person just an enabler of genius? The editors of the book were hoping to shed some light on how these famous couples shattered traditional gender rols. So much of history is written in a gendered way: creativity is considered masculine, women only paint or write when they are bored. But there is so much more to this story.
The idea behind the book is so interesting to me. I’m a writer and painter. So much of my creativity happens behind closed doors. However, I wouldn’t necessarily say that I create in solitude. I’m inspired by friends and other people all the time. Social interaction is critical to so many of my ideas for writing and reasons for painting. Intimate relationships absolutely affect my creativity – some relationships thwarted my writing and painting, while others inspired me beyond words. So I was intrigued to read about more famous collaborations . . .
The book explores 13 major creative partnerships, including:
- Lee Krasner and Jackson Pollock. (abstract painters)
- Sonia and Robert Delaunay (fashion & textile designer, cubist painter)
- Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera (painters)