Live – PJ Harvey, “Grow Grow Grow”, Review: On Art, Personal Growth and Vulnerability

 

“Not giving a fuck does not mean being indifferent; it means being comfortable with being different”, at least, that’s what Mark Manson claims in The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck (p. 14). You might not get his point immediately, but watching PJ Harvey’s live performance below will certainly change that. If mainstream art is all about being able to “fit in”, normal art is all about being different and not giving a fuck. Of course, not giving a fuck does not mean that you do not care, or that you are not scared, or that you are without emotion. Rather, it means you may feel all of those things, but won’t let it stop you from doing the right thing. Real art is then, in essence, all about vulnerability. About being able to be vulnerable in front of a large group of strangers, and about having the courage to do just so, even though you might be scared shitless.

Imagine you have to give a live performance about your deepest, darkest, most shameful inner fears in front of a group of artists such as yourself (people who know the vulnerability feeling). Difficult, right? Now, imagine having to do the same thing in front of a group of non-artistic people. People who are, or at least trying hard to be, utterly and completely “normal”. Even worse, right? Like, a fucking nightmare. Because, here you are, being your weird little self in front of those who try hard not to be; in front of X number of people who are all more than capable of pointing out just how weird you exactly are. Not just with your music, but with your clothes, your voice, … your everything.

Lately I’ve been having this suspicion that true art is all about the artist’s courage to “step out of the closet” and be authentically weird or, as a synonym to that, vulnerable. Because true art is all about the courage to be as vulnerable as possible, so that the artist’s vulnerability might serve other people, people they do not know nor care about (“strangers”), in feeling slightly understood. In that sense, one’s own vulnerability serves a greater cause. True art is then, indeed, all about the love of emotional growth. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why it is worth watching this stunning performance of PJ’s “Grow Grow Grow”.


Director: Unknown TV Show

 

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