Ladies & Gentlemen & Children of All Ages....
The brown carpeted stairway winding it's way to the 2nd floor of the PTSC, which was once a firehouse, is adorned with a huge twisted metal sculpture suspended from the ceiling. Depicting someone's inner turmoil, it is creatively displayed and immediately understood. The gnarly metal with sharp edges is tightly coiled and tangled around itself. Diffcult to tell where it begins or ends, much like someone's tangled past which is raveled around itself with no seemingly way in or out.
Ascending the stairs, art work wraps around the brick firehouse walls and continues up the steps. Nine steps and a landing. A landing placed to take a breather and glance at someone's soul displayed on the walls. Another nine steps, another landing in which to ponder and wonder about the lives of the artful survivors.
Abstract works of art, scream at you with their clashing colors and jagged shapes and beckon your attention. Other works of art are drawn with child-like mindfulness, but the content is far from a childhood lived in peace.
One drawing depicts grave markers of dead soldiers with ransom like writing- RIP - on the tombstones. Fallen comrades, drawn and remembered by the survivors with names, places, and field of death.
One startling piece is framed in a glass boxed frame. Nails, nuts, bolts and screws lie in a heap at the bottom of the frame.
The title: Pieces of the Survivor.
The artwork is stunning and dark, yet a glimmer of hope resides in each and every piece.
At the top of the stairs is the Trauma Group meeting room.
In this room on the second floor are the current survivors of their own personal war. A war that was declared on them, and not by them. They too were called into battle on someone else's terms.
The people in this room are part of my current circus. They bring their own acts as I bring mine. Escape artists, clowns, mimes, magicians, trapeze artists, sword swallowers and 1 or 2 who consider themselves to be the sideshow freaks.
We have perfected our acts that have gotten us through life to shield ourselves from our abusers and our perpetrators and anyone else who tries to get "too close".
It's now time to take off the masks, costumes, cast away the titles we've been given and face our fears with the same courage that has allowed us to survive.
The Ring Master, TGD is waiting.
to be continued.