the dreamer and the dream-part TWO

the dreamer and the dream-by jay herron by jayfherron
the dreamer and the dream-by jay herron, a photo by jayfherron on Flickr.

The following is my artists statement,which is on display with my painting ‘the Dreamer and the Dream’ at the Alachua County (FL) Victims Services Center-in Gainesville for recognition of April being National Rape and Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

My statement:

I am a 62 year old male.
Our family home was in Washington DC. I was born just outside of the city-and I grew up surrounded by the history of the United States.
As a boy the museums and archives of our nation’s Capital became my substitute for Saturday morning TV, and eventually my sole classroom, opting to cut classes and explore the great buildings in the city instead.
In the 1960’s-my teen years-the changes of unrest were very obvious in the city! The Civil Rights Movement and the Viet Nam War were events in our history that I was seeing firsthand. War protests and the scenes from Viet Nam were daily news-equally as much as the fight for freedom for the segregated citizens of the USA. A very confusing time!
Responding to the call of duty-I enlisted in the US Navy at age 17. After basic training I was stationed with my older brother-a petty officer on our ship.
This was a poorly conceived arrangement which enraged my brother to the extent that he lied to have me arrested and placed in the brig-the USN style jail. An innocent kid!
I was raped there-frequently.
After two months I was released, and my body was freed from the brig-bringing with it the shame and guilt and lifelong loss of trust and faith in others. Every day of my life recoils with the post traumatic disabilities of the trauma.
I have never been free-PTSD follows me forever.
My piece is “The Dreamer and the Dream”
We all grow up having dreams and aspirations for what our futures bring! My dreams were to become an architect inspired by the cavernous buildings I grew up around.
My dreams were shattered by the effect the crimes against my body had on my mental health. Instead they were replaced by broken marriages damaged by alcohol and drugs-anything to mask the pain.
Although the misery of PTSD continues to recall the past-I have taken better management of my health. After many years-I have begun to relearn myself and find release in my art!
What my life would have been like if the attacks had not happened is now what my dreams are of. I do not know-what was supposed to be a beginning ended at age 18.
Now I find my escape in my art instead of with drugs, or being a drunk! My paintings allow me a place to where I can confront all of the anger I have from my past-and the memory of the brig. To me-my paintings are like being a mid-wife to a child being born into my hands, and somehow there is a peace in that. Jay Herron

2 Responses to “the dreamer and the dream-part TWO”

  1. tundrawoman Says:

    Your art is stunning: It immediately grabbed me, pulled me in…..thank you.

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