Ravi Zupa considers books the best way to experience art. He has spent decades studying books about the art, mythology, religion, and history of cultures from across geography and time. Entirely self-taught, Zupa looks to works by German Renaissance printmakers, Flemish primitives, abstract expressionists, Japanese woodblock artists, and Mughal painters for inspiration. He also frequently incorporates religious iconography from Europe, Asia, and Pre-Columbian Latin America with revolutionary propaganda from around the world. With a distaste for ironic art or the thoughtless appropriation of culture, he integrates seemingly unrelated images in search of something universal. Zupa does not create any of his art digitally; everything comes from his own hand.
I lifted this motto from Doug Stanhope’s “No Refunds” comedy special. It offers a very good description of how I live my life. I believe that there are times when embracing wildness is healthy and too much restraint is not.
I didn’t always believe that however. I lived a life of very strict sobriety and restraint for 11 years. Not a single drop of alcohol or coffee or any other intoxicants. Not because of any addiction, I just valued that kind of control.
I’m no longer that way now, but I still value temperance a great deal and when I need to, I go for very long stretches of strict self-discipline.
I think it is possible to be addicted to temperance. Everything in moderation. Including moderation.
Quick note for the record, I’m not referring here to people who have identified their own addiction and instituted a zero-tolerance policy for themselves. This, I respect very much and I do not view this decision as an addiction to temperance. In my opinion, being alive is one of the most difficult things one could ever do! - Ravi Zupa
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