|Vivi-Mari Carpelan: "Your Indifference is Breaking my Heart", 55x38 cm, copyright 2012|
This is my latest handmade collage for "Project X". In this one, I have as usual used a photo of myself. The background consists of pages from a book from about 1900 of poetry in the English language, it's a section of poetry that is "didactic and moral". Basically it's a lot of high flown, flowery words without much sincerity, the typical moralist "pointing fingers" in very explicit ways that was common in poetry of the 19th and 18th C - it's trying to teach us something about life, often in a rather self-righteous and shallow way. Yet it is still echoed in the way many people talk today when they try and advice you about how you should lead your life. It's easy to tell others how they should live but much harder to act accordingly. This is one of the basic truths about the human condition. It's typical that those who pretend to be spiritually minded in some way give themselves away by babbling too much. I think a certain reticence and control over the faculty of speech can be the sign of a greater spiritual mind.
I wanted this image to be a direct confrontation with the viewer. It's you and me - alright? This is personal. I thought we were supposed to be in the same boat? Why are you indifferent? I want to know. Why have you closed off and decided that you don't need to be empathic and interested in people who are the so-called weaker members of society and that they should just pull themselves together? Why are you not helping to instigate laws that make us all truly equal in the deepest possible sense, where anyone who isn't out there with the intent of hurting others should be treated with respect and seen as a person worthy of a dignified life regardless of their ability to "contribute" to society? All of you out there, who don't notice my struggle to survive within the frame of this society, or care about anyone else in a similar, marginalized situation - you all break my heart.
“This is personal. It's about you and me. Look me in the eye and tell me you really don't care that I'm not as able bodied as yourself. Look me in the eye and stop giving me all that moral bullshit about taking responsibility for my own health. I am. You have no idea to which degree I'm struggling to manage. But I can't do it alone. I can't do it without your help. Ultimately, society is the cause of my condition. You didn't realise that, did you? We're all in it together, whether you like it or not. Please, can't you see that? Your indifference is breaking my heart.”