Storytelling for a better living
A storyteller is how I like to define myself.
Recently I discovered the word storylogue. I could not imagine such a word existed until I got to know Robert McKee. He is the kind of person you listen to carefully since each and every one of his words have such a deep meaning.
Why do I love to write stories with my camara? Why do we all love stories? To my first question his answer is:
“A storyteller is a life poet.”
We tell stories about real life, or dreamt life. I personally stage an idealised life in my pictures. So, what do I learn from this fictional version? To comprehend my present, maybe.
“We are not taught to live (...)”
For artists, life is a clue we try to understand. Art is our means of expression and a learning tool about who we are. It is a way to balance the inner chaos and to restore harmony. The philosopher Nietszche said:
“No artist tolerates reality.”
Reality does not attract me as an artist. I stage it. I transform it to absorb it into my dreamy world, to control it.
Life is a question mark for all of us. “Why we are here? What is the sense of life?”. Robert McKee analyses that philosophy, art, science and theology, the four wisdoms, they have tried since ancient times to give answers to these existential questions. But what is the situation today?
Let’s start with philosophy. We can say that today philosophy is not at its best. There are less and less people reading books, and reading philosophy books, even less. In Paris, I recently attended The Creative Journey conference organised by Nelly Rodi, a renowned trend agency. The first speaker of the day was the philosopher Gaspard Koenig. His allocution was about luxury, and I must say, it was very interesting to put some perspective to the short-term vision, the instantaneity of our society.
The second wisdom Art questions reality, puts it upside down, rejects it, transforms it, and reinvents it. Art is freedom. You put limits if you wish to. You are the one to decide. Until recently, I believed that it was a means for me to escape from reality, but after listening to Robert McKee, maybe it is totally the contrary, and maybe it is to live more intensely.
And what about Science? Everyday we learn more about our species thanks to science. Recently I read an article on a Chinese investigation about Alpha men. Yes, science has the answer. They actually found that in mice Alpha male characteristics have to do with genetics. The myth of Prince Charming is falling apart!
And finally, Theology. Less and less people believe today, this is a fact. It seems this is no longer the space where we look for answers.
To summarise, in our daily routine, we hardly open a book however we read a lot through social media, less and less people practice religion, and science does not give immediate answer to our questions. In the entertainment way of life we are immersed today, Art and its storytelling character seem to be the medium where the most of us try to get answers to our existential questions. As Robert McKee says:
“Stories equip us for living.”
Today we go to the cinema, or watch a movie at home to understand our story and ourselves. They make us experience alternative lives by proxy. But stories are everywhere, not only in movies. They are in my photo series too.