I’ve said it many times, we need to redefine the spotlight and understand we all deserve to be there and share our voice with the people that matter to us.
I have experienced the beauty of this. I had my sculpture exhibition opening and it was opened by my 6 year old nephew.
Most people would have had a local dignitary or well-known artist to open their exhibition. But no, not me. My nephew was so excited about my exhibition – it just really struck a chord with him. He asked if he could do some paintings to be put up at the exhibition and talk about them at the opening.
Hell yes! The sweetest 6 year old-style paintings have their own section at the exhibition. And I love them.
The opening of the exhibition was an amazing opportunity for someone so young to share his voice and be in the spotlight of his choosing. And this spotlight moment was him standing on a chair in the middle of the gallery, with my arm around him and talking for 20 seconds to more than 60 people.
But do you know what? It was the best art exhibition opening I have ever been to. His little talk made everyone laugh and be filled with joy. It made them feel something (which coincidentally is what my art asks of the viewer as well).
And then I said a few words, followed by some words from the photography artist, Karen Visser, I’m exhibiting with who has never done any public speaking before.
Leading up to the opening I asked her if she’d like to speak, she said no, “You’re the public speaker you can speak for both of us.”
But it was also her spotlight moment. It was her time to share her voice with so many of the people that matter to her. It was her time to talk about what she loves.
At the end of her talk she said, “Gosh, I hope that was OK, I’ve never publicly talked before” and then my nephew ran over, held my hand and said to the audience, “It’s the first time I have done public speaking too”. Which lead to much laughter and clapping. So much love.
No matter what your age, you belong in the spotlight and people want to hear what you have to say. I know this to be true.
Here’s to seeing you in the spotlight.
Source: Catriona Pollard