A (very dear to my heart) professor told me in my last semester as an undergrad that although he did not think my current body of work was in any way bad, he did not think I had yet created my greatest work. He described my work (me?) as a beautiful and exotic flower that was showing a petal here and there, but that had not fully bloomed, not yet revealed all of its secrets.
It's nearly five years later....and I don't feel like I'm making or have yet created my life's greatest work.
I don't even know what that phrase would mean to me. I would think that all my future work would build off my previous and current work, making every new work the greatest work of the moment...it's a strange to me.
It depends mostly on what the viewer or artist sees as valuable. Is my greatest work the one that makes me the most money? or recognition? or critical praise? Is it a work that defines me (as an artist or a human being)? Is it the work that I will be remembered for (being conceited, and assuming I will be remembered by those other than my immediate family)? Is it the work that changes the world, or the world of one individual? Or is it the work that I am proudest of, that means the most to me, that was my greatest struggle, my darkest hour, and my most opaque triumph?
Or is it the work that is the most therapeutic for the artist? ...is it about a work that finally frees me from the constraints of this world, and all it's simple and burdensome truths?
These kind of things weigh heavily on my conscious: late at night, riding the train, or whenever the weather in my head is clear, because I do consider myself an artist, and because I am conceited as well as ponderous. Will this be my greatest work? Will any work be my greatest? And will I know and deem it so, or will it be bestowed upon me by some unseen phantoms, or will it be some thing prescribed well beyond my short time on this earth. Or will there be any of my works worth deeming great? or memorable? or important? or valuable?
If this is my life, will it be my death?
if I am a failure as an artist, then am I also a failure as a human being?
I suppose, I am starting to worry that the daylight is beginning to dwindle, and the days are rapidly accelerating towards an infinite plane just beyond the horizon...and I worry that I will never make it in time.