I post one chapter from the Manifesto 2.0 every third Sunday of the month. I promise a free physical copy to those who give constructive feedback on minimum 8 chapters. There are 16 chapters to be posted where this is the first.
I do not write a manifesto for it to be used as a manual, neither do I wish to dictate my ideas, beliefs, and values on to you. Instead, I hope that it can inspire one to be active, reflective and thoughtful, for each individual to chose their own path. Living to me is not about following in other’s footsteps, or trying to be normal, that to me is killing who one is. However the idea of normality is extremely pervasive in our culture, we are constantly made to feel that we need to have something because we are told that everyone else has it. The fraise “I just want to be normal” and versions of it is a common trope in TV and film. In Norway, there is an unwritten law called “Jante loven” which dictates that you shall not think that you are better than anyone else and you shall not stand out in any way. I will argue that normality is a form of control and not something that is beneficial to the individual or to our growth as a society.
The reason I write a manifesto is to unpack why I create? To me, that is the fundamental question, to which the answer can determine my appreciation of what I am experiencing. My answer starts with another question, why do we exist? To which I reply, to explore, then to create must be to explore, to create work that can be explored and inspire others to explore. This is not to say that is the only valid answer or the best answer, it is just my answer, nor do the variety of answers sit on a scale where mine is the best. There is no best there is only honesty, to which I must get into greater detail.
I have both the curse and the blessing of feeling like an outsider no matter where I go. It is a curse as the feeling of loneliness is part of my being, it is a blessing in two ways, 1: that it enables me to see oppression and the facade that is placed in front of it, 2: that it enables me to be in a constant state of struggle.
I am highly critical of how we live as a society, and I believe that if it ever changes for the better our descendants will look back at us with disgust. Therein lies another motivation for making art, a desire for a better society. But what is better? For now, I shall say a society that wishes to bring the best out of its citizens, in contrast to polarizing the population, conforming them to static ideas and dealing in binary thinking.
I have chosen the path of the artist because I believe it is best suited to communicate to the people, as the definition of art is fluid, it has a direct link to our humanity across ideas and cultures and it has the potential to hit a nerve in our collective consciousness and brake through established structures of thinking. Unfortunately, people generally support popularized art, which I will argue is a form of self-imposed subjugation. It is in the peoples benefit to support and explore art that challenges one. Many argue that they do not like such art because they do not understand it or that they do not have the preconceived knowledge to appreciate it. I will argue that is precisely why one should like such art because it means that you need to make an effort to understand, and it is that effort which will help one grow.
My methodology for creating art and living are integral to one and other, I have a personal path that I’m striving to walk. To successfully and fully describe why I create art I will need to define a few ideas such as honesty, happiness, success, struggle, passive and active living, the fool, the teacher and preacher, the purpose of life and more.
This will not be an objective text, though I will endeavor to present a reflective and thoughtful paper. Much like how Plato wrote his text, not by using empirical studies, but by using personal observations whilst attempting to create a good argument. I do not dismiss objectivity, rather I see it as an unachievable ideal that one should strive for, but never maintain that one has achieved. I believe in subjectivity that acknowledges that right and wrong is dependent on point of view, and the current system of thought. Any person or group who claims that they know the absolute truth is to my mind fundamentally dangerous because I believe such a position of belief restricts exploration and development.
I will be writing in a subjective voice and I will write with an opinion. However I wish to stress that I do not write to convince or manipulate you towards sharing my opinion, I write because I wish for you to be active, to reflect and think. My opinion is not static it is constantly evolving, from observations, intuition, encounters, dialogue and works by writers, artists, and creators.
I do not believe in writing a final concluding piece, this is my second manifesto and I believe there will be adjustments and more Manifestos to come as I grow and receive new input, hopefully also from you the reader.
My intention with creating art and for writing a manifesto is to inspire people to be the best versions of themselves. It is also my intention to use this manifesto as a foundation for my family, for why we have come together as a unite, define what we are struggling for and the values we wish to present to our daughter. It is with the support of my wife that I am able to create and together we explore.
Kindle Unite Nurture and Stimulate Thought.