George Kanis. Self, painting
The life of an artist is not for everyone. It can be a life full of insights, discoveries, searches, an opening up into a world of heightened perception and untold expanses of reality. However, it can also be one that questions every perceived fact and reality that we as a species have painfully built up over millennia, it can question the very fabric of the foundations of who we were, who we are, and who we are meant to be, and that really isn't for everyone.
But for those who do decide to take that road of existential self-discovery, and it is a choice always given to the individual, life certainly won't be boring. Art is the bastion of the great experimenter and the great discoverer, it is therapy for the soul and it is a lifetime path with no real conclusion.
George Kanis. Crucifixion, painting
George Kanis. Multimedia, painting
George Kanis is an artist who is an experimenter. He feels comfortable in the world of the new, of the untried, the untested, he is an inhabitant of the undiscovered country.
The territory of the experimenter gives George, as an individual creative, the opportunity to resist becoming part of a larger creative theme, of a genre, of a club with rules and regulations, and more specifically, of ideas, ideals, and expectations that may well not be his own, and ones he may not want to share as his own.
George wants to fly free, to experience his personal journey and the journey of his work, as an expression of himself and how he sees, interprets, and interacts with the world that he finds around him.
George Kanis. Abstract study
George Kanis. War, abstract study
As he himself says, he wants to find "... a line where chaos and freedom can coexist with harmony ..." It is a suitably bold ambition for a young man, and could well take him a lifetime to explore, but interestingly George is both fully prepared, expecting and hoping that it will indeed take a lifetime to do so.
It is as if the artist is taking the single life that has been given, and has made a conscious decision to use that life as a tool of self-expression, to deliberately use a life in order to understand the workings of the world that that life lives in, and perhaps to even make a difference.
George largely works through photography and painting. He is looking to use those two disciplines for answers, using them as experimenters to help him find some form of true reality. He is comfortable with the disciplines, not because they are necessarily familiar, or tried and tested, but because they have for him, a valuable composite of freedoms, and that is exactly what he is looking for, the freedom to be free.
George Kanis. Forever Young, photography
George Kanis. Bath, photography
Whether George finds answers to his questions, whether he finds a heightened reality beyond the everyday, is largely up to him. It is after all his perspective, and his journey, but this is an artist that you can firmly believe has a definite focused ambition, an ambition to be the best he can be, to find whatever truths he can through his lifetime, and to pass those truths onto others through his work.
It is the intention of many artists to do the same as George, to find a great discovery, and to expand on that discovery. However, few seem to manage to sustain the length of time it takes, or treat it with any real sense of integrity.
George Kanis. Garden, abstract study
George Kanis. Red, abstract study
George, however, seems different. This is a young man who has already understood that some of the paths in life, the ones formed by society as the right and the proper ones, the ones that will give material comfort and success to the ego, are not the right ones for him, that they will not allow him to make the discoveries that he so much wants to find and to develop.
And so he has taken on the role of the great experimenter, George Kanis and his lifetime path of discovery. At only 28 he has a long way to go, but I know that it will be a journey that he will enjoy. It will be journey that sees him take on the continuing regenerational cycle of intrigue and revelation, and I wish him well within that creative wheel, I know he will do well.
George Kanis. Curtains, photography
George Kanis. Museum, photography
To see more work by the artist George Kanis, and indeed to follow him, he can be found on tumblr, and facebook.
All of the imagery for this article was generously supplied by the artist. Please ask George before using any of the said imagery. Thanks!
George Kanis. Ric, photography