This past saturday, I was invited by Okay Africa as a guest to the 1-54 art fair held at Pioneer Works in Brooklyn New York. The fair was founded by Moroccan Touria El Glaoui in 2013, and it is the leading international art fair dedicated to contemporary art from Africa as well as the diaspora. The fair gets its name from the 54 African countries that constitute the continent, with annual editions in New York, London and Marrakesh. For self care check in and wellness I decided to go. The art I saw this weekend from various artists particular female artists was so rich, full of depth, with vivid imaging and social messages. From artists like Sethembile Msezane, to Peju Alatisse I left with my creative tank on full and pondered on quite a lot about the essence of being a creative as well as a social entrepreneur. I reflected on the artist journeys and wondered what type of focus, purposeful living and passion driven behavior got them to such spaces. This of course then led me to reflect on my own path and the things that keep me focused on my purpose driven path.
1. Your vision
I always uphold my vision with high regard because it is what drives me. Most importantly it is God's vision for my life and it is my life's compass. This weekend I reflected on the journeys of each of the artists I encountered and wondered how might their vision to become artist have influenced their journey, and how quite possibly it helped them remain focused. For me my vision is what keeps me focused, it invigorates me and also helps me connect to the right people as well as disconnect from the wrong ones. You can usually tell you are in great company as a vision carrier when the community you are in talk BIG ideas and Future. Your vision then is a great part of your journey in achieving your destiny and fulfilling your purpose.
2. Your gifts
When i speak of gifts I am speaking specifically about divine gifts, things you didn't have to go to school for necessarily, the things you are just good at. Your gifts help you locate what you should be doing in this world, and keep you focused on your purpose driven path. For me many times, when I use my gifts I find the most satisfaction in those moments. My gifts also help me remain focused on working smart and having perseverance in challenging times. There is a certain assurance one has when you are aware of your divine gifts. For me I know I always have them and I keep them protected and put them to good use and even when things get difficult for me in difficult seasons, my gifts always make room for me to keep on excelling in life. Whether it is speaking, writing, creating etc, my gifts have always helped me maintain focus on my path.
3. Your calling
Our calling is the main reason we are on this earth. For some people it could be helping to encourage others, for some it is making people laugh, for others it is healing etc. Knowing one's calling can help you drown out the noise of distractions along your path of purpose. Knowing one's calling can also help you say yet to the right opportunities and decline the wrong ones.
As I reflected on each of the artists I encountered this past weekend, I wondered how might these three things have gotten them to such large international platforms. Sometimes it is easy to see the outcomes of the lives of others, without zoning into what their journeys must be like. For me I am learning each day that the goal of fulfilling my purpose on this earth is to stay focused on my vision, tune into my gifts and to adhere to my calling. For more on my visit this weekend visit Blanc Modern Africa instagram page.
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