Lisa Whittington

Where Do You Go From Here Lisa Whittington?, 2015
Acrylic on Canvas
48 x 60 in
Not For Sale
Where do I go from here? How do I get there? Where is there and how do I know when I arrive? These questions permeate my thoughts as life has definitely taken on new meaning. The pandemic made me examine the world, myself, and my art a little closer. I have been spared to live a little longer and blessed to create some more.

A self portrait I created just a few years back sits like a queen ruling from her throne centralized over the fireplace. Her eyes are pensive and demanding and she is postured to continuously question my existence and my purpose every time I see her. I come home—she looks at me. I leave—she watches me go. I cry, yell, sing, and fall asleep on the floor from an exhaustive workday—and she is there in the same position with the same conversation “Where do you go from here Lisa Whittington?”

Sometimes she was the only one I would have to talk to and she reminds me of the importance of touch. Her chin pensively resting in her hand and feeling her face. Even though her flesh is acrylic, I mimic her touch on my face and I thank my art for reminding me that I am human.

For people home alone like me during the pandemic, a touch meant everything. I remember going to the doctor and the nurse touched my arm to take my blood pressure, and I realized that that was the first human touch I had in a long time. What a difference a pandemic can make.

Sometimes we don't realize the true power of what we paint or why we are painting it. Sometimes as artists, we paint ahead of our own times. Sometimes the answer is revealed at a later time like it is now for me as I’m staring back at myself through a portrait. Everything has taken on a new and deeper meaning and has been intensified by the pandemic. Will I be okay? Will we be okay? My purpose for living and creating and being an artist escalated during the pandemic. I would sit on my couch and stare back at my acrylic mirror image. My thoughts run through my mind. My ever racing mind. In a world of time where life is continually being purged from earth by a pandemic, I appreciate that she reminds me that I am still here.