When my husband and I first lived together, he hung his own art up on our walls. But everytime he sold something or had a show, our walls would suddenly be blank. It was depressing to see all those bare nails. I finally put my foot down, and that’s when we started collecting our own art.
We don’t collect expensive art or art by world famous artists (at least not yet). We collect our friends’ art (sometimes with barters and trades) and art that we stumble upon and love. It’s a huge part of who we are. The art is mostly photography, drawings and prints—but we also have some paintings. We’re proud of our collection and know where each piece came from. It reminds us of our friends, and places we’ve been. And we love to be surrounded by art.
Right now the walls of our new house are blank, and it’s really disturbing. We have been painting our new house and trying to fix it up, so we delayed our stuff for a week. And now the stuff is here but not the art. My husband is going to go back and get it separately in a couple of weeks (he didn’t trust the movers), and right now it’s stored in his Brooklyn studio.
Moving is a huge disruption in your life. You comb through your possessions ruthlessly. You ask yourself why you are keeping sentimental objects and make yourself toss out things that you might regret later on. You aren’t able to write/read/exercise or do anything you might enjoy doing for weeks because you are packing/unpacking/sorting/tossing/cleaning. And it feels like it will never end.
One thing we did not purge was our art collection. We have more than we can fit on our walls, but we’re not ready to say goodbye to any of it. My husband has even tried to start my son on his own art collection, buying a small piece from a show called “My other robot is a donut.” And my son likes to have annual “shows” of his own art in his room, mimicking his dad’s gallery shows and offering refreshments.
Even after my desk is set up again, and I’m able to get back to writing my third book, the house won’t truly feel like it’s ours until we have our art on the walls again. And then I’ll be able to breathe a big sigh of relief. We’re home.