Aug 6, 2009

What It's All About

We have lost a number of seminal artists over the last few years, but the recent passing of Titus Glover, Baatin of Slum Village, has hit particularly deep for me. I am sad on a personal tip; and I have been wracking my brain, trying to figure out why. Maybe because I know people who were close to him, so it feels more personal in that respect. Or perhaps it is the fact that his passing brings up the reality of my own mortality and that of my community of artist friends. He was only 35 years old.

Speculations around Baatin’s death have disturbed me; the possibility of drug abuse and complications around his mental health. It makes me think about the self-destructive ways in which many of us live, the coping strategies that are harmful. But do we call each other out? Better yet, do we take the time to take care of each other? That rarely happens. We are living in the most disconnected of ways. Community feels artificial nowadays.

I want to know why and how we can change this. I want us to engage a meaningful sense of community. One that goes beyond the level of creative output. Beyond the nerdery and dopeness and all the inspiration. I want us to take care of each other.


Anonymous Susana said...

I know you're talking about artists here, but the disconnection line struck me.

I found out about a death on facebook the other day. Somehow, I stumbled on a group called "In memory of _____"... it didn't quite register at first. In memory? Why in memory? I started reading all the comments from friends, and that's when it hit me. He passed away nearly two months ago, and this is how I find out. I clicked and clicked and clicked, I read everything on that damn page, frantic to find out how it had happened.

I felt cold and shaken and shocked and... grieved.

Being far removed from tragedy can be traumatic in itself. You don't have a community to mourn with, to turn to for understanding.

I know who you mean when you talk about Baatin's friends. I wish I could reach out to them, to see if they're okay. But my only way to communicate with them right now is via facebook, and that just seems like an awful way to reach.

I'm grateful for the good friends I do have, and know that they will always check for me when I fall.


2:37 PM  
Blogger pomegranate queen said...

yes i'm definitely talking about artist circles here. my own observations and from conversations with others.

it's incredible how FB has become one of the most effective ways to stay in touch and find out news (good and bad). that's why i can't hate on it. and i don't.

i reached out to 2 of Baatin's friends that i have contact with via phone. so they were only a txt away. needless to they were devastated and appreciated the love and support. which made me realize how much more we need to reach out to eachother, and not just when tragedies happen.

i hear you on being grateful for solid friendships. it's truly a blessing and something to be thankful for.

much love.

1:04 PM  

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