Monday, 13 December 2010

St Mungos Museum of Religious life and Art ( Life is like an ice cream)

Stardust: Some thoughts on Death

Had the day off work on Saturday so decided to go to St Mungos musuem. This is my first time in here, have driven by so many times and seen some great exhibitions advertised but have never went in till now.

Was it good? Yeah I enjoyed it. The exhibition that is on just now is titled 'Stardust: Some thoughts on Death' which the website describes as;

This thought-provoking and surprisingly uplifting exhibition is the result of a year’s work by Glasgow-based artist, Gillian Steel, who has been exploring the theme of mortality through a series of interviews with people whose work touches on the subject of death.

The responses Gillian encountered were ‘passionate and insightful’, revealing ‘a highly personalised range of belief systems.’ This multi-media exhibition presents a slice of the contributions Gillian listened to, collected and recorded during the course of her journey''

And this is what it was for me, insightful and though provoking. Death is such a fascinating subject and I wonder how differently it would be for me and others if it was more openly discussed and explored instead of brushed under the carpet and only confronted when someone in your life close to you passes away. Would it be easier if we dealt with our own deaths and those that we love now instead of putting of to a later date? Or maybe it is best left to a later date so that we can focus on enjoying our lifes now? Who knows, maybe a mix of both is best, being aware of it but not focsusing on it 24/7. Or what if there is no death but instead a transition to another ''place'', what then is there to mourn or fear? Maybe maybe maybe, all maybes. Anyway it got me thinking and questioning my own beliefs about death so for me it gets the thumbs up.

One of my favourite pieces was a video piece where a young child is asking an older man questions related to death. This was one of the bits I recorded below because I had the desire to understand what he was saying better. The C is the childs words and the M is the mans words.

C:Do you ever worry or think about dying?
M:Yes I do a lot every day. May I say why?
M:All right. The reason is because im older, and im closer to dying than you are, right? So thats the first reason. The second reason I think about dying is beacause I think and ive trained myself to think this way and that is in order to live life fully, one by fully I wont go into that but in order to live fully one must be prepared to give up life. So its like. You know how good an ice cream is?
M:When you finished it
M:But while your licking the ice cream
C: You suddenly find out youve finished it
M:Its great isnt it, its great. Well thats how I feel . I feel like life is like licking an ice cream and Im aware that the ice cream is going to end. Its going to finish once ive stopped licking it. So ive got to be prepared for the end of the ice cream. So i do I think about it. Its a very good question. It really makes me ponder right now, to think about that. But yes I think about dying a lot and and, its um, its like unless you know that you are going to die life doesnt have any meaning.

Be aware your here living now, enjoy it immensly but know and accept and understand that it has to end at some point. Easy! ha! ha!

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