It is said that the journey of 1000 miles begins with the first step.
My first step was an experience of awe.
At the ripe old age of 15, I was playing football with some friends one autumn afternoon. It was a normal day of cool temperatures, deep long shadows and fading light.
At one point the ball bounced out of play. I went to retrieve it. As I picked it up and turned around to go back to the field I was confronted with and struck by a moment of universal reflection. In simpler terms, it was if the sky cracked open and I became aware of being aware and in commune with the greater consciousness of life. Martin Buber’s Ich und Du, (I and Thou)
I returned to the game and asked my friends, “Do you not feel that something is missing?” “Throw the ball and play,” was the response.
“My practice is my journey and my art is the expression and revelation of its moments, lessons, deeper experiences of contact, and intimacies.”
This experience transformed my life and set me on the path of “searching.”
That day has strengthened me by giving me perspective. This has affected my entire life and set the tone for what I value in myself, and others. It guides me in knowing that we are all on our journeys, our paths of unfolding and awakening. We are often (and naturally so) unaware of the lessons and layers we are learning and being grown by. Seeing towards the universal allows me to have a sense of compassion and empathy for everyone.
My life has been one of searching, contacting, and expressing. I am not here for the mere pleasure of it all, we learn, we grow, we care, we transform. I am not here merely for the role of “survivor.” The story, the journey, the river are stories and opportunities for intimacy. Intimacy with self, others, place and experience. The practice of making art is my place in the human community and this sets the vector of my offerings, whether they are creative or reflective. My practice is my journey and my art is the expression and revelation of its moments, lessons, deeper experiences of contact, and intimacies. For me it is this path of acknowledging and being open to the continual experience of “unity” with the whole that guides and fuels my living.
John Domont is an award-winning visual artist who has exhibited worldwide. He is the recipient of a Creative Renewal Arts Fellowship from the Arts Council of Indianapolis and has served as United States Artist Ambassador to Thailand and Peru.