View new work on SuperRare here: https://superrare.co/tombadley
The full meaning of my work isn’t yet known. You can’t see the full picture yet… I consciously make art from a place of knowing — to some extent — the future. I reach into the future and grab my ideas from there. So, although the work exists in the present, there’s a part of the story I can’t communicate, because it’s unverifiable, unknowable. The full meaning cannot be shared — until now.
For most of my adult life, I’ve been preparing for and contemplating a time like this. You could say, I’m now in my element. I’m at peak artistic production, I’m at the peak of my craft, I’m collating and compressing all the experiences and skills I’ve had into a rich art practice, always with a sense of knowing, that I would be living through ‘a time of chaos’, and — importantly — the resolution of that chaos.
We’re now in that time. And we’re now sufficiently close in time to events that will point the way of the future, the world is in sufficient need of reassurance, that I feel it’s necessary to make this statement. The recent work I’ve tokenised on SuperRare is there to force the issue!
This recent work made overt reference to a future North America, after a ‘civil war’ situation — the Civil War 2.0. I’ve even heard this phrase recently mentioned in reference to present day riots. These works were originally made in 2016. They were made for the late 2020s. I’ve decided to tokenise them now, after seeking approval from a twitter poll, and in light of the developing situation in the world. The intent of these artworks is to turn away from the present, in full knowing of the future.
This sense of knowing is a source of power, that can never be attained by reacting to the present. Bold words, but isn’t true self-empowerment based on something constant, solid, rather than shifting?
The original story behind them can be read here: https://medium.com/@TomBadley/after-the-civil-war-2-0-americas-new-dollar-f560f290358c
The ‘story’ I wrote in 2016, told of a future of irreconcilable differences in the 2020s, that became reconciled. Healing and positivity resulted. I wrote this knowing that this would be the approximate direction we’re to take, as a species, without knowing the time scales and the specifics.
The anger erupting in the world is a result of bubbling frustration. A part of the Human psyche knows something is desperately wrong… The current discontent is — from what can be known — a result of a feeling of inequality, of having been abused.
There is no easy way to say this: in the near future, (within our lifetimes), revelations will arise that prove the entire Human race, regardless of colour, gender or religion, has been used, abused, and held back from its true potential. The exact details of this abuse will come in waves, because its full picture is too disturbing to know in one go. This, unfortunately, is the truth.
Righteous anger will erupt on a global scale and will be justified. Anger is a necessary part of healing. Anger is the primary and most raw attempt at healing. Grief will follow. From there, the Human race will have to transition *very quickly* into pride. The pride will come, once we gain a full appreciation of how far we’ve been held back, and all we’ve accomplished in spite of it. The ‘elephant in the room’ will be the many Human achievements, despite being poisoned, irradiated, divided, threatened with violence, viruses, controlled, starved, and so on.
This positive ending is a resolution, but it will also be a new beginning. The Human race will catch a ‘wave’ in unison, and an incredible amount will be achieved in a short space of time — technologically, socially, spiritually. When Humans are on the same page, they can do things very very quickly.
So, this is the place I come from as an artist — ‘back to the future’! This is why I’m not inspired by present events. This is also why I keep reaffirming the importance of Human potential, and self-esteem. These two factors are going to be *really* important, going forward.
The transition we’re about to make has an important element to it: self-responsibility — I’ve written about this so many times before. The righteous anger we currently see in the world is based on a feeling of being victimised. The violence is a manifestation of the victim mentality: vengeance. These two impulses are sides of the same coin.
These impulses cannot create true self-empowerment. To be a victim, is to refuse to acknowledge one’s own ability to option one’s reality. If one decides one is a victim, the translation is: “I’m not responsible for my reality, it is imposed upon me”. This isn’t said to play down the crimes of the past: where free will has been violated, a crime has taken place. But even if one’s ancestors were the victims of a crime, to choose to remain a victim is to perpetuate the power of that crime, not annul it. The same is true if one chooses vengeance as a strategy: it only expresses a refusal to acknowledge one’s personal power to reconcile, to bring into balance.
There isn’t time in the day to uncover the victimhood inherent in every narrative being consumed around the world — it is incredibly engrained in Human culture. Each will have to think for themselves and decide whether they’re being tempted to feel like a victim and give up their inherent responsibility in creating whatever reality they want.
The spirit of self-responsibility is also an idea I’ve ‘borrowed’ from the future. The ‘victim impulse’ will reach its peak upon the revelations that eventually unite the Human race. When I write that after anger and grief, we must become proud, it’s a way of saying we must quickly become responsible for ourselves, to a degree that we haven’t yet been able to. The reason is: we’ll have no other option left.
By the time these revelations are fully known, the culprits will have long since been removed. Their influence will be no more. There will be no retribution, no monuments to bring down. The possibility of seeking vengeance won’t be allowed. We will have nothing left, but the truth of the situation, and our Human potential. We will have nothing left but the space to decide whatever that potential could be.
My way of expressing this is simply by creating the best artwork with my brain and 10 fingers. I depend on technology only as a tool. My own Human mark-making, just like my ancestors painted on cave walls, is my indelible Human touch. Every mark counts. At the expense of profit, you could say I put most of my artistic efforts in product development. Beyond a certain point, it doesn’t have commercial use. Product development becomes a spiritual exercise. This is preparation for a time where Human potential will be quite the talking point, and all will need to bring their world into balance.
This sums up where I come from and where I’m at as an artist. Heavy stuff — but it’s necessary to match the energy of the times.
Find me on https://twitter.com/currencydesign
My artist site: https://www.tombadley.net/