Artistic Intersectionality

I came across this link this past week, and it really got me thinking about how photography is a medium that tends to intersect other outlets in artist’s lives. Most of us associate Patti Smith with music and songwriting, but she was certainly influenced by other artists (specifically Mapplethorpe), and had her first big photography exhibition in 2011.

Patti Smith, 2012

Thinking on this, I know instantly that I am an artist with many intersections of mediums in my life. My primary art is photography, but I am also a poet, a spoken-word artist, a graphic designer, an interior designer, a crafter, and a dabbling illustrator. Some people only really see one of these artistic aspects of me. Individuals that see me perform spoken word may never know enough to know I do photography. My design clients are probably unaware of my published poetry.

How many artists do we pigeon-hole into one medium, never truly seeing their complex lives and selves? Yoko Ono was also a photographer. Paul McCartney’s wife is a photographer with a monograph solely dedicated to her life overshadowed by the Beatles. Amanda Palmer is not just a musician, composer, and songwriter, she is a fantastic writer, a producer, and well-known performance artist.

Truly, it would behoove us to not only open our eyes to the complexities of other artist’s lives, but also to our own complexity. Sometimes, one art form is not enough. I’d even dare to say rarely. It’s going to be my personal goal to start opening my mind toward artists’ multitude of expressions. What other mediums do you use to express yourself or make yourself happy, that tend to get overshadowed?