Inside the Artist

We have all been painted into a story; now, which story do you wish to paint?

As we are intertwined with all that lives, life reminds us that a saint and a mass murderer both exist within everyone. This was a very uncomfortable realization to come to peace with... If we are everything and nothing at the same time, the "good" and the "bad", then who am "I"? Deep in the heart of the Amazon the answer was revealed to me. It is the POWER OF CHOICE that defines and re-defines our soul with every breath. Choose wisely what role you wish to embody, as you are an important player in this evolving super-organism we call life. We have all been painted into a story; now, which story do you wish to paint?

I choose to paint my dreams into reality and celebrate the gift of being born into this physical realm by soaking up the nectar of life through the senses and sharing these blessings with the world. We are the heroes of our own story and we have the power to choose our perception. I choose to live, to love and to be happy. The former child-soldiers, recently freed sex-slaves and refugees that I paint with find the courage to forgive their captors, forgive themselves, and choose to diffuse the cancerous hate with love. What do you choose? 

My journey has guided me through 52 countries, lived in the streets, in bushes, in boats, in caves, in jungles, in mansions and castles too... I lived my childhood dream by playing professional soccer in Europe, shared ceremony with multiple indigenous tribes, worked down the Volga River of Russia, filmed a documentary in Bosnia, had an art show in the former home of Cortez in Cuba and hitchhiked thousands of miles through the crossroads of life trusting the wind and always ending up exactly where I needed to be. All walks of life, every person, every tribe, every country is a teacher and student.  I feel deeply grateful for the abundance of experiences across the globe,"good" and "bad", that have led me to this very moment. I paint this moment, the choice... I paint the choice to be the alchemists that we are, choosing to transform the suffering into Love, pain into the golden NOW, with gratitude and happiness. 

I once travelled to dangerous places in the world believing that I needed to save it to save myself... to release the guilt for being born, to sacrifice my life to heal the errors of humanity for which I am a part of. And then it clicked inside, fighting fire with fire creates more fire. Now, I travel where my heart is called not to save the world, but to have fun painting with people who have never touched a paintbrush before... to celebrate freedom with those tasting it for the first time in their lives, to live all my dreams and share them with others. Since ten years old I always wanted to see the wild mountain gorillas in the Congo... and in 2013-14 I created the Mami Wata Art Therapy project, sharing art therapy with 800 children of war AND yes, I was blessed to hold hands with a wild mother Mountain Gorilla. I share my work in museums and galleries on 4 continents, I have painted murals in 15 countries, and if I have paint on my hands, its a good day What is your dream? I hope you are living it! If not, NOW IS A GOOD TIME... AND WE CAN ALL PAINT OUR DREAMS INTO REALITY TOGETHER! I BELIEVE IN YOU, CAUSE I BELIEVE IN ME AND WE ARE BEAUTIFUL REFLECTIONS OF EACH OTHER! "Be the change you wish to see in the world!"

Thank you for sharing this moment with me =) Have a beautiful life and I hope we cross paths again one day!~

With Love,

Benjamin Swatez "Bengadi"