An Artful Fetish for Words

I've had a love affair with words for as long as I can remember. As a precocious youngster, I would read the dictionary for fun. (Hey, I didn’t say I was popular, just precocious). I understood all too well that the pen truly is mightier than the sword, and a word once spoken would linger and continue its impact long after it has been uttered. Words are powerful indeed and "fetish" is one of the greats - it's an attention seeking word, it has sizzle and as many exciting synonyms as you can imagine: obsession, fixation, mania. Fetish is a word with a dark side; a word perfect for the world of art!


1. an object regarded with awe as being the embodiment or habitation of a potent spirit or as having magical potency.

2. any object, idea, etc., eliciting unquestioning reverence, respect, or devotion: to make a fetish of high grades.

3. Psychology. any object that causes a habitual response or fixation.

Yes, I confess, I have an art fetish. There's no question in my mind that every artist pours at least a little magical potency into their work and that it is meant to elicit strong feelings. That the artist aspired to create a sense of awe and wonder, and more than likely went through at least a brief period of fixation before the piece was done.

I wish to share with you some of my favourites here. The artists and the artworks that embody a potent spirit, and along the way I promise I’ll share with you my fixations and challenges in creating art that I hope will inspire others.