Peter Clothier Interviews : Page 2 of 2
A Conversation with Peter Clothier
Q: What spawned your monthly podcasts, "The Art of Outrage"? Have you had a good response from listeners? If readers aren't familiar with this podcast series, where can they find it?
A: I was invited to get going on the podcasts by Bill Lasarow, the editor and publisher of Artscene magazine, with whom I have collaborated for many years. When he approached me with the suggestion, I responded with the idea for "The Art of Outrage." I am myself outraged by much that is going on in the world and in this country today, and am much interested in artists who share that outrage and express it in interesting and challenging ways. I like that bumper sticker: If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention! And yes, the response was gratifying. Truthfully, though, I have moved on in recent months to newer ventures like the publication and promotion of Persist, along with the guest appearances I have been doing to spread the word. Anyone interested can still find the podcasts posted online at Artscene Visual Radio.
Q: What is your greatest source of inspiration?
A: The inner workings of the mind, and the always fascinating manifestations of the human spirit. It's all about our common humanity.
Q: What do you fear most, in regards to your work?
A: As a younger man, I used to be afraid of what other people might think about it, that it might be judged unkindly. That I might be seen as foolish, inadequate, a bad writer. That doesn't worry me at all any more. What do I fear now? It's not really a fear, but I worry about not being able to reach as many people as I would like to.
Q: What is the best way to attract and retain new blog subscribers?
A: Well, there you go. I think the best way is to be generous. To give out as much as you can; to reach out and follow others and respond to what they have to say; to be open to every possibility as it comes along. Persistence, I believe, brings its own rewards.
Q: The biggest creative mystery is
A: Where does it all come from? To which, I guess, the answer is: the human spirit also a mystery.
Q: Tell us, Peter what's on the horizon for you? Where do you see yourself in ten years? What hopes and dreams do you have for your creative work in the next decade?
A: I hate to tell you this but in ten years, if all goes well, I'll be eighty-five! And, I trust, still writing! By way of compensation, let me say that the past year, my seventy-fifth, has been the most creatively rewarding of them all. The publication of Persist opened a new door for me: in speaking about the book to a wide variety of different audiences, I discovered the potential of a whole new medium in words the art of live communication and performance. It has been immensely gratifying.
Having hidden behind my typewriter/computer for so many years, it has been a real joy to "come out." I hope to pursue this further in the coming decade. I also have two new books nearing completion. The first is something of a sequel to Persist. It's called, provisionally Nurturing the Creative Spirit. The second is tentatively titled This Is Not Me: Shedding Delusions. The title comes from that wonderful Buddhist mantra, "This is not me, this is not mine, this is not who I am," and it's about leaving behind me those parts of myself that I no longer need.
Q: Peter, would you share a few final words of advice and inspiration with us?
A: Keep at it. Put your heart into it. Give generously of yourself and find any means possible to put your work out in the world. As E.M.Forster wrote, "only connect." Find out what's most human about yourself and share that with others, even as you listen with a generous heart to those who also want to tell you who they are.
Peter Clothier writes chiefly about art and artists in Southern California. He has published widely in national magazines, and is the author of David Hockney in the Abbeville Modern Masters series. More »
© 2011 Molly J. Anderson-Childers. All rights reserved.