The finissage of the exhibition took place on Monday, 21st of August, and I am now processing what happened this past week when my friends joined me in Menaggio for my solo exhibition. The emotions, the joy and the vibes were in high octave.
When my friend showed up at the gallery on Friday, the 18th of August, I looked at him in the doorway and I thought how strange it was to see this guy who looked so much like my friend from New York, Fabio. As he was entering the gallery with his friend, Fernando from Argentina, whom I didn't know then, I was trying to see who he was because Fabio had previously written to me that he couldn't come because he had too much work. Fabio had asked Afaf not to say a word that he was coming as a surprise and she never gave me any indication of his visit.
Afaf, Fabio and I met while we were working at the United Nations in New York more than ten years ago. Afaf & Fabio created a group gathering called, the Sunday Brunch group, and I had created the Life & Friendship group. When we merged both groups of friends, we had created an international family of friends from all corners of the world in the spirit of New York, the hub of cultural diversity.
Throughout the years working at the United Nations in New York while pursuing my artistic activities, my friends' enduring support became my source of inspiration. As John Dewey's Theory of Art writes: ''Art is a reflection of society and culture. It helps us understand what we are as human beings and influences how we relate to each other. Art is an expression of our inner thoughts, feelings, and experiences. It's also an expression of creativity that can be used for self-reflection or social influence.'' While John Carey in What good are the Arts writes: ''It testifies to a deep wish among art-lovers to believe that art makes them better and more understanding of other people.''
Hence the reason why my friendships play an important role in my creative process for it is an ongoing search for a deeper meaning enshrined into universal values, celebrating our common humanity while enjoying our differences as we are witnessing in the natural world.
Nature is a Web of Life!