Sunday, September 17, 2006

I am back from Africa....

...Tunisia is a beautiful country. I was met by an exquisite sunrise....this was followed by an arial display by the migrating swallows as they dipped over the hotel swimming pool, getting a drink. It is amazing how you leave Home having just noticed the lack of summer birds and find them again in North Africa. It makes you feel right at home. Speaking of which, the organisers of the Art festival, and most particularly Nejib, did just that. I was met at the airport and greeted like a long time friend, and now I know I am one.

All the Artists I met helped create a very pleasant festival. I have come away both stimulated and with a new sense of confidence and purpose. I have at last shaken off the doubts about my work and creativity, I know I am able to do what I want to do, I know what I want to do has relevance and also that I am like most artists, rarely completely happy about my work. For any of my contemporaries, hello, thankyou for your friendship and I will be in touch soon. I learnt much from my colleagues, all who had different views on our world, we see the same things in differing ways, but we all found a common goal:- our art, and the need to create art.
I must admit, my lack of linquistic skills was a little off-putting at first, but with the linquists going out of their way to translate for those of us that required it, and the fact that my long forgotten school days french came back over time made conversation interesting and inspiring.
Artists struggle to survive the world over was ouir common theme! I also spent time with other stragglers the second week, and when we slowly shrank as a group I came to the realisation that we were more than just a group, we were friends......a pleasant thought.

A little about the programme...It was wonderful, but a little short, the second week allowed much more creativity and dialogue. I think this is being rectified for next year, four or five days makes a world of difference when creating art. The organization left nothing to chance...even down to the producing of sea-sickness pills prior to a short boat trip...yes every little detail was considered. After the main festival was over, those of us left were looked after and checked for any problems daily, a doctor called when one of our number was unwell, ferrying to the airports (even at 4am.!), and we were all wished goodluck the evening before our departures by members of the organising committee. Above and beyond duty!
I will leave you with a few photos of Tunisia for today.

I am tired and jet-lagged.

Until tomorrow or Tuesday..

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