Writing Art – The Underlying Role of Art and the Artist

The Underlying Role of Art and the Artist

Writing Art by Al Gord

 

“Politicians don’t bring people together. Artists do.”
Richard Daley

 

art-as-givingThe role an artist plays varies, based on subject matter, audience and intent of the work. Whether the artist intends to inspire, raise awareness or even provoke – artists also need to actively make a positive difference. Sometimes that is achieved merely by the subject matter and how it moves and connects others. On a more intentional level it is about giving back to society and supporting important causes.

When others think about artists, they may think about creative types producing works; pieces based on personal experience or themes of personal interest. Synonymous with this is the notion that the role of the artist is to maintain a sense of culture within society. While elements of this notion may be true, the role of the artist has been and continues to be far more than just as a cultural catalyst.

Everyone has a role to play in society, to help others, to be part of a bigger cause. As an artist I feel that it is part of my social responsibility to support causes, which may not be as well known, but which help others in need. The last few years have afforded me these opportunities through art exhibits.we-can-be-heroes-just-for-one-day

we Can be heroes (just for one day) by Al Gord

In the fall of 2015 I was fortunate enough to be part of the ‘Touched by Fire’ art show in Toronto supporting the Mood Disorders Association of Ontario (MDAO). MDAO offers support programs for individuals throughout Ontario and their families, who are living with depression, anxiety or bipolar disorder. In the spring of 2016 I participated in the Twitter Art Exhibit, held in New York, to support Foster Pride, an organization supporting young women in foster care. This upcoming spring I am participating in another Twitter Art exhibit, this time in the United Kingdom, to support Molly Olly’s Wishes for children who are seriously or terminally ill.

I feel fortunate that I get to do something I love and help others in the process. While art is my vehicle for giving back, there are unlimited opportunities for individuals. I encourage everyone to look for active opportunities to make a difference. Find a way to combine your passion with a wonderful cause; the sense of satisfaction you receive will be something truly meaningful.


Al Gord is an up and coming artist who has been featured in Niji Magazine. He uses abstract techniques with figurativism to create Rock Icon Portraitures and Modern Romantic (Uninhibited) Expressionist pieces. Al also creates pieces which focus on mental health awareness and advocacy. Regardless of the subject matter, his signature style is clearly recognizable. His work is showcased on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, where he welcomes inquiries, questions, and feedback.

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Al Gord and Al Gord Art: All work is the creative and intellectual property of Al Gord and Al Gord Art. No part of my work (specific work, its electronic reproductions or its intellectual property) may be reproduced, copied, modified, transmitted, re-distributed or adapted, without the prior written consent of the artist, Al Gord.
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The Rooster!

roosterHappy New Year! I hope 2017 has been off to a wonderful start for everyone. I’m excited to share something that has been rattling around my mind over the holiday season.

With only a day before the work week begins again, (for us teachers anyway), it struck me to reflect on the piece below about a moment in my life where a teacher made in an impact on me. I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed mulling it over and finally putting it together.


They come to me like snapshots, images of a time long ago.

In one of them I am standing in a beautiful courtyard. The trees are tall and luscious, the grass is green and moist. Next to me is a small tub. I look down at it, eyes desolate, water slowly dripping onto my bare feet. Only moments before, the water which now trickled from my hair, belonged in the same pool. I had been playing alongside my friends, splashing, giggling, pouring water over our heads. The sun was shining. The air was warm. Life was good.

Well, at least until the Rooster appeared.

Rooster was the more-than-generous name I gave the meanest kindergarten teacher ever. Unfortunately, she also happened to be my kindergarten teacher.

“Don’t you dare go back in,” she clucked. “You know the rules. If you step out, you’re done,” bulging eyes looked down at me.

“Mr. Ducky fell out,” I began, but there was no use. The Rooster wouldn’t have it.

Just like that, the fun and games on Water Day were over. I stood there, staring at the others, envying that their stupid ducky stayed put. They looked so happy, so together.  I supposed that’s how I looked not too long ago. It’s funny how in a matter of an instant I no longer belonged.

Lesson number one: It sucks being left out!

Rooster is mean!

I want my mommy!

Another snapshot lays itself atop the last, and I am five again, same place, similar time, same old Rooster.

This time I am sitting on a long wooden bench, head bowed, hands clasped rigidly on my lap. I am wearing my favourite blue dress, the one with the big colourful flowers. It seemed a shame to stare down at such beauty when everything else around me felt so ugly. The time-out bench was no place for me. I was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Someone pointed their finger at me. Now I had to ‘think about it’ when I had no clue what I’d done.

Lesson number two: Life is not fair!

Kids can be cruel!

Rooster is definitely the worst teacher ever!

I still want my mommy!

So there I was, slowly climbing out of the cozy cradle that had sheltered me for the first five years of my life. This was life though, sometimes not so nice, definitely not as nice as Mommy.


Sometimes the person you become is an amalgamation of the many experiences throughout your time on earth. I found that this moment helped mold the teacher that I would one day become, or at least the teacher that I did not want to be.

Here’s a thought exercise, think of a moment of impact that helped create the You of today. If you like, tell us about it in the comments below.

Have a great week!

Lora