Beautiful Vulnerability

There is something beautiful about being vulnerable. A friend told me this about a year and a half ago. I remember cringing as he said this to me. The person I was at the time responded very differently to these words back then.

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At the time, we were sort of dating, and he told me this statement in order to get me to loosen up a bit. He was asking all the tough questions, attempting to break down walls I had spent years building up. I dodged his questions (successfully…so I thought) and chose not to self-disclose. That’s when he said, “You know, Marisa, there’s something beautiful about being vulnerable.”

I remember my body physically responding to that statement—muscles tightening, jaw clenching, body overheating—I was resisting in so many ways. It makes me think about what else I was resisting at that time in my life.   I was so closed-off and afraid of being vulnerable, even to a person who was completely open and receptive to my vulnerability. I felt so awkward, and it was so obvious. All I could think was how do I get out of this conversation? Somehow, probably with a bad joke or some kind of lame humor, I escaped the conversation. He knew he was pushing me to my limits, but I just wasn’t ready to answer the tough questions. I maybe couldn’t even answer them for myself.   It was safe to be transparent, but I couldn’t do it.  I felt attacked, although he was coming at me from a loving and caring place.

A year and a half later, I still struggle with times like these, although now, I wholeheartedly believe that there is something beautiful about being vulnerable.

It’s straight up frightening to be vulnerable. I used to see it as a sign of weakness, but that’s so far from the truth. I shake my head at my younger self for thinking that. Yes, you feel exposed and yes, exposure is scary, but if you own that exposure, nobody can use it against you. Not one single person.  Trust me.

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So, as part of owning my own vulnerability, I really want to start writing more, specifically about my life (more personal and meaningful topics) and how I live it.  This blog is a great creative outlet for me, and I’d like to take it to the next level. #WatchThisSpace for what’s to come in this new year 😉

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All of these amazing photos are from Pipilotti Rist’s exhibit titled Pixel Forest, which is now on display at the New Museum (located in the LES, 235 Bowery). I have seriously been trying to go to this exhibit since it opened in October, but just never found the time! Due to all the press and hype, the exhibit was extended, and I finally took the opportunity to go yesterday.

Rist is a Swiss video artist known for her mesmerizing and hypnotic video and multimedia installations. Her video, film, and image projections incorporate themes of gender, sexuality, and the human body.

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Pixel Forest occupies the main three floors of the New Museum. The exhibit includes works that span over the artist’s entire career, emphasizing the progression of technology and how this evolution has affected her art.

The kaleidoscopic projections, soothing audio, rhythmic lighting of each piece make you feel as if you are transported from your everyday, monotonous world into a tranquil, dreamlike environment.

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I love entrancing LED installations, so naturally my favorite piece was Looking Through Pixel Forest, a hanging LED installation and video projection piece (pictured above and below). The hanging LED lights changed to all colors of the rainbow in a rhythmic pattern while two videos played on the adjacent walls. The video, audio, and lighting combination made me feel like I was in a pixel forest, straight out of the movie Avatar or something. I felt like I was in a completely different world, and I loved every moment of it.

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This exhibit ends on January 15th!! That’s in 4 days, so I strongly suggest making it a priority to check it out yourself!

Read more about Pipilotti Rist and her Pixel Forest here and here.

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Xx Marisa

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2 thoughts on “Beautiful Vulnerability

  1. Beautifully written! I completely agree. – Vulnerability is similar to soil absorbing water for flowers to blossom. The minute soil becomes hard it rejects water which causes the flowers to dry up. It’s such a pleasure reading your blog. Thank you Marisa! Best,Nathan SchellB10 Partners Inc.—- On Wed, 11 Jan 2017 13:26:52 -0800 Happens For A Reason wrote —- lifeofmarisabarnard posted: “There is something beautiful about being vulnerable. A friend told me this about a year and a half ago. I remember cringing as he said this to me. The person I was at the time responded very differently to these words back then. At the time, we were sort”

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