Do not Walk in the Tram Lines and Other Stories

I read an article about the ‘Queen Bee’ syndrome.  I read an article about Emma Watson’s extensive work regarding feminism.  I read a text on Georgia O’Keeffe’s identity.   And I created a piece titled ‘Do not tread in the tram lines’.

I was told quite recently that thoughts are like a tractor on tram lines.  If you continued to drive on them they will continue to get deeper until you have carved yourself a path.  At the time of the emergence of O’Keeffe, the paths had not been charted for women artists.  They were in the tram lines the men had marked and to get out seemed to involve travelling within that shape and then gradually find a way out.  It was interesting to read about her desire to be an artist rather than a woman artist, but sometimes it is hard to relate when you are living a life without that kind of discrimination.  What can you do to appreciate the changes which have been made by strong women over the decades, centuries even?

Emma Watson’s work has stretched across the globe addressing issues in a world which is ever shrinking with the increased efficiency of communication.  I was once told over a decade ago, that poor communication is the source of most problems in the world.  It would seem with the development of social media and other forms of online communication and technologies we have developed a whole new set of problems.  But they are following the same tram lines.  The same flaws of character which have manifested themselves in a new age.

O’Keeffe was photographed her most of her life and put her in the forefront of the American art scene and the public too, by her advocate and husband, Stieglitz.  He created an identity for her which wasn’t representative of the one she desired, which equated her art with her body and sexuality.  She stated that: she knew, that she, nor anyone, else could change his opinions.  The phrase ‘loosing battle’ comes to mind which reminded me of an American phrase I learnt: ‘you can’t fight city hall’.  Would optimum levels of accurate communication change the minds of those creating the negative tram lines.  Can you create other ones completely separate from those and are high profile figures needed to make that first plunge?

The idea of women behaving like a ‘queen bee’ and not making the path to power more accessible for the women who follow, preferring to be the only one, seems to refer to a kind of jealous trait.  There is no community in this idea, but lots of ambition.

So collating a desire to appreciate the liberal society we live in, the desire to have community and ambition, and to make the first marks of new tram lines, my thoughts are as follows:

When I appreciate something I do it in the way I do when I feel grateful I live in London.  I got out and see as much art as I can fit in, try the restaurants and be super cultured, as much as my free time will permit me. O’Keeffe stated when talking about luck, that she was very lucky, and also ‘maybe it’s because I’ve taken hold of anything that came along that I’ve wanted.’   When you see an opportunity which can start a new tram line, seize it, even if its the tram line of your own identity.

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