What is the best thing that I love about my work? Working for myself allows me to navigate organically, weaving in time for contemplation, inspiration and self-exploration. I believe true authenticity is found through self-exploration, mining the self is rigorous and at times difficult work so it is not always what I love best, but it produces authentic results – I love authenticity.
What is my idea of perfect happiness? Experiencing the extraordinary in an ordinary moment – the overwhelming sensation of simultaneously holding the tension of opposing fields, and knowing for that moment – something about the totality of life is revealed.
What is my greatest fear? Succumbing to the part of me that wants to give up, get a job in a diner, move into the upper floor of shabby duplex some where in the south, and continue where Henry Darger left off.
What is the trait that I most deplore in myself? Being some one who believes that my darkness is an essential part of my being, I do not feel as if I deplore anything in myself. However, I am often overburdened by worry, but I am in the process of actively working on converting worry to creative ingenuity – so far the results are inconclusive but promising!
What is my greatest extravagance? Wine. Not so much the buying of it, but the partaking of it… it tends to make me sleep in and waste the morning.
On what occasion would I lie? I often tell small innocent lies to avoid a tedious discussion or to enhance a story, otherwise I have nothing really to lie about. That said, I find it almost impossible to tell the full, complex truth, few are interested in it, or able to spare the time to listen.
What is the influence of role models, in my work and in my life? It is not in my nature to have role models but there are people I feel a strong kinship and/or corollary with. I believe I share a good deal ideologically with Carl Jung and the nature of his work; I have a strong sense that Jacob Boehme and I talk to the same deity; I have always felt Kate Bush and I share a similar kind of aesthetic space; and I sense an odd, but somewhat understandable, kinship with Anthony Bordain.
What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work? I feel pretty certain the necessity to make money makes me focus but I would love to have that little monkey off my back!
When and where was I the happiest, in my work? The initial steps: becoming absorbed in the process, percolating ideas, sketches, note taking and material gathering – this is bliss – preferably at the beginning of a project with a clear deadline, that is not too far in the future, and not too soon.
If I could, what would I change about myself? If I could change myself to look like Tilda Swinton/David Bowie that would be fabulous, otherwise I believe (while not claiming it is true) that we are all in a continuous process of evolving – experiencing consciousness – using ourselves as conduit. If we are willing, at some point we are drawn by the siren song of creativity to express our unique understanding of consciousness in some physical form for others to incorporate into their worlds, so I really can’t see myself trading my process for another – this one belongs to me, I am continuously changing according to my process, and I would not have it otherwise.
What is my greatest achievement in work? I have created a world authentic to myself, where I can find respect and acceptance, with room to expand and evolve, filled with intermittent rare adventures, collaborations, unexpected trials, and the incredible joy of making things, conjuring ideas, connecting with, and hopefully encouraging, others in their world making. A world where I can quite possibly play an integral role in the evolution of the human race – as above so below…
What is my most inspirational location, in my city? The Met, Gary Graham, My apartment.
What is my favorite place to eat and drink, in my city? Union Square café and Orsay – neither is new, cutting edge, or obscure but both have been unfailingly comfortable and welcoming through many years.
Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime? There have been many who have helped and supported, but the artist and graphic designer Jeffrey Jenkins is my partner, he has been there for 20 years and many, many, starting points. My younger sister and brother (Mary and William) have listened to thousands of ideas and plans, each time eagerly adding their valuable advise, while the wonderful artist Kathy Ruttenberg has played an integral role – probably more than she knows – and the amazing stylist Heather Greene has been an unfailing support through out several life iterations, particularly the latest one!
Whom would I like to work with in the future? Joanna Ebenstein, Robbin Gourley, Ali DeJohn are currently on the radar. Beyond that…?
What project, in the nearby future, am I looking forward to work on? Writing a Manifesto. I feel daunted by the effort it will take to encapsulate the bulk of the concepts, but I also feel absolutely thrilled by the challenge and its potential to inspire fellow world makers.
How can you contact me?
Message of the founder of The Heroine’s Journey Project Peter de Kuster
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