The holidays are upon us and so is the time of reflecting, giving thanks and sharing quality time with friends and family, new and old.
Is it just me, or do these next couple months typically blow by in a blur? Not that we mean them to or want them to but because they’re often accompanied by a bustling of busyness, expectations and “stuff.”
This holiday season, however, the Durango Arts Center and the creative citizens of the city challenge you to get away from the “senseless stuff” and unnecessary busyness to connect to community, art, the craft of making and your own creativity.
In senseless stuff, I mean those things that carry sad supply-chain back stories and short life spans. And I’m talking about those times when you’re standing in line wondering, “Why am I buying this?”
As for some of the “unnecessary busyness,” I’m referring to those trips to stores in search of something to buy for someone you care about ... although you can’t seem to wade through enough stuff to find something meaningful enough to express your love and gratitude. Annie Leonard shares in “The Story of Stuff” film that Americans consume twice as much as we did 50 years ago, with each of us on average generating about 4.5 pounds of garbage a day and spending three to four times as many hours, on average, shopping as our Europeans counterparts do. That’s a lot of time that could be better spent living in more meaningful ways and a lot of senseless waste being produced for the landfill.
I’m not saying shopping is bad, nor purchasing things – we all do this, and our economy and community depend upon it – but I am drawing a comparison between conscious giving and the act of senseless gifting we all do, myself included.
My purpose here is not to guilt-trip you, but I do want us to ponder the difference between giving and receiving a handmade one-of-a-kind offering or experience embedded with time, energy, art and creativity versus a forgettable mass-produced object found on a shelf, wrapped in plastic under fluorescents.
This season, the artistic community of Durango invites you to “Give the Gift of Art,” which can be interpreted any way you’d like. Maybe it is you taking some precious, hard-to-find time and making something, reviving your creativity and handcrafting your sentiments. Maybe it is giving the gift of learning or experiencing life through a class, production, membership, performance or simply picking out a piece of art from one of our many local artists. The artists, galleries and creatives of Durango invite you to explore what the gift of giving art means to you and yours this holiday season.
As for DAC, we invite you to visit us we are transforming The Barbara Conrad gallery into a European holiday market for our annual Winter Solstice Artisans’ Market featuring fine art and craft from more than 65 regional artists from Nov. 22 to Dec. 24. We hope to see you for Noel Night on Dec. 5 from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.
firstname.lastname@example.org. Elsa Jagniecki is the marketing coordinator at the Durango Arts Center.