Why Primary Scenes Was Created
It might be of interest to explain some of the reasons why Primary Scenes was created in the first place.
One of the main reasons Primary Scenes was created, was from the often palpable yet under the surface feeling, that I needed to find a way to better integrate and unify various aspects of myself, to move forward in life.
By the time I was creating the body of work that would eventually become Primary Scenes, I had been a lifelong sketch artist, I had been close friends with amazing people from vast wealth and stifling poverty, I had studied film and media at university, I had lived through 9-11 in person, I had been a part of a small growing company, I had suffered through difficult medical issues, I had lost 100 pounds, I had given public presentations about using technology to make life changes, I had written screenplays, I had read from some of the wisest and most timeless minds this world has ever known, I had watched things fall apart, and I had followed the faintest spark towards a better path.
There’s a lot more I could say, but that's all I can fit in to this format. Suffice it to say that I got to a point where divergence had run its course, and it was time to start converging as a person with a purpose.
One of the reasons Primary Scenes was created was to bring different aspects of human experience together, which are too often siloed. One of the most powerful recognitions that I had over the course of my life experiences and much reading and writing, is that the way we tend to think about the human experience is far too isolated and artificial.
We tend to talk about health as if it’s something that happens as a hospital with medicine, rather than years of lifestyle choices and environmental influences. We tent to think about psychology and emotions as things that are to be sequestered to the therapist's office, or papered over with distractions and addictions of all kinds, instead of learning to navigate the full spectrum of the inner landscape with skill. We tend to see strategy and productivity only discussed if there is a scoreboard, or a quarterly earnings report, or an enemy combatant death total, instead of recognizing that the same basic factors are at play when we try to manage intentions in any area of life. We tend to view this world as static snapshots that represent the way things are, rather than seeing the changing structures and functions that create the world we see.
These are just a few examples of why I felt the human experience needed to be represented in a more unified way. Not because of mere aesthetic preferences, but primarily because the world simply is a unified whole whether we like it or not. The challenges we face in our lives as individuals, to the challenges we face as a civilization and a planet, require an appreciation of wholeness and interdependency, that is sorely lacking, and often quite unintuitive.
I think that too often, we look at the visual arts of painting or drawing as being completely divorces from the craft of writing and speaking. We seem to think that product design can’t be integrated with art, or even be art itself. In “Walden” Thoreau said “...to affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts”. I have always been fond of this line. I like it because I think it speaks to something greater than the creation or exhibition of a thing called “Art”, and instead directs us to consider the full ecology of how we live. It’s possible that bringing different mediums together, can help to create more views and provide more bandwidth, for moving in the direction Thoreau was pointing.
I would not be the first person to recognize how fractured and Balkanized our society tends to be, across many different scales. I think this was more tolerable in the past when the problems and challenges facing the world, were smaller and more linear. This has been changing, really in some sense it is the story of the human experience writ large. In particular, since the Industrial Age, we have begun to wield a degree of energy, and accelerated technological progress, that has tremendous non-linear effects, precisely because of the growing interdependencies that come with increasing connectivity and scale.
There was a time when you could be a farmer on the plains and not concern yourself with bustle of the city. There was a time when you could say that you're a “liberal arts” type who doesn’t know about science. There was a time when you could be an analytical math type, and write off culture and language and art as being frivolous wastes of time. Those days are gone with the wind. The crises and connectivity of this modern world, necessitate that each one of us grow beyond being merely a “math type” or an “art type” or a “biology type”, or “urban” or “rural” or “working class” or “Elite”, and take on a perspective of seeing how the interplay between all of us is what will determine how far we can go before we annihilate ourselves and the planet.