Archive for August 9th, 2022

The Secret We Carry

GC Myers-The Burning Secret a sm

The Burning Secret– Now at the West End Gallery

Man is not what he thinks he is, he is what he hides.

― André Malraux

The words above from Malraux quite often ring in my ears when I think about acquaintances and friends. Actually, anybody, even those who I see in a negative light.

I always wonder what secrets they hold, what details of their life and personality they withhold from others. How do they see themselves? Does their self-image align with the image they present to others?

And if not, which is more accurate? Are they more transparent or is their existence more opaque, mainly comprised of the untold secrets they bear?

It generally has me asking: How well can we ever fully know someone?

But that question inevitably leads to another: Do we really want to know the secret self of everyone we know?

I don’t know the answer to that last question. But realistically, I don’t think I would want to know all secrets. I base that on the last several years which have revealed more than enough info about the heretofore unknown thoughts and beliefs of people who I thought I knew better than I actually did.

Of course, there are those whose secrets I would like to know better. Mainly they are those whose words and actions confuse me. I wonder why they do what they do, what drives them to act in such ways. But even that desire to know more is tempered with the acknowledgement that the secrets of others are none of my business, so long as they don’t intersect with my own secrets or unduly affect the lives of others.

I have tried to be transparent in my art and life, but I often wonder if that is truly possible. Can one ever fully reveal their secret self? Are we ever even fully aware of all the secrets we hold?

I don’t know. Maybe that’s the burning secret that is behind the title of the painting at the top.

Excuse me for rambling a bit here. The secret self we hide is an easy subject to find tangents to explore. I have to go so you’ll have to figure it out for yourself.

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