The Age of Aquarius | Rharha Nembhard X The Now Series

These unprecedented times are marked by zodiac activity with far reaching implications; whether one believes it or not, we are in the midst of the procession of the Equinoxes, from the Age of Pisces to the Age of Aquarius. In ancient cultures, such prolific Celestial movement harnessed energy capable of shaping or destroying civilisations — and it seems we are witnessing this very possibility. Systemic structures of a linear and masculine emphasised nature can no longer serve us – while we have known this, we are beginning to see these capital-centric and individualistic modes of existence crumble; and without the necessary restoration of balance and equality, the polarising destiny of humanity will continue to unfold under the banner of suffering. What does it mean to channel one’s creativity amidst this, and how do we restore balance as artists weaving the peculiar and dazzling tapestry of life?

Masculine and feminine energy are imbued within all beings; it is not a gendered matter; it is the innate blend of essence and form with the potential to be aligned within us all. Under patriarchal dominion, men and womxn suffer from the absence of unity within. Rharha Nembhard is the creative force behind Noirwave; a Universal movement created together with her husband Petite Noir. The movement is underpinned by the notion that Black is the limitless space of infinite possibility; upon which all colour and experience is formed. In Hinduism, Shakti is the primordial Mother and essence upon which Shiva – the dormant, masculine potential of consciousness – is able to create. The feminine essence brings potential and creation into existence through the divine dance of these unified beings. I cannot think of any artistic union who embody Shiva/Shakti’s dance more than Rharha and Petite Noir.

The Now Series, hosted by Ana Sting in conversation with visionary Rharha, elicited one of the most frank and beautiful conversations I have engaged in on an online platform – or perhaps any platform. Meditations and interrogations delving deep into questioning the restoration of the divine feminine as an archetype for healing and creating were shared; in a space of safety and non-judgement. Rharha and Ana held the space in total collaboration, inviting us to share our experiences around maintaining spiritual cleanliness as artists. We began the virtual dinner by clearing the energy and tuning into our collective breathe, connecting with our throat chakras; so that everyone could bring their Truth to be held within the space. I have longed for a space in which consciousness was honoured as the channel into the conversation; and in my work I have often referenced awakening and awareness as important processes for the cultivation of “sustainability”; an indigenous, original mode of existence that has been fundamentally belittled and distorted.

I resonated deeply with learning to listen to the intuition of the sacral chakra; which is paramount to our navigation of spaces; Rharha urged us to learn to feel our way through experiences, rather than think our way through life with the limited capacity of the mind. In the Age of Pisces, the mind and intellect rules; it is in the Age of Aquarius that our divinity is put forth to shine, through the inner investigation of healing and merging our lower and higher selves. In a world riddled with expectation and excess, existence within its structures and systems can oft be exhausting and degrading. Thus beckons the question where our strategies for life making are concerned; if we are not making art for ourselves, in a deep conversation with Mother Nature, then who is it really for? Or rather, what is it really for – validation perhaps? Is validation enough to nourish us – or as Rharha succinctly noted, is validation even necessary? Social media is a tool to share work; and how it is received or perceived is beyond our control, nor the point of our endeavours.

Nourishing our beings and bodies was spoken about at length; if we are not taking care of ourselves on every level, how can we give to others? How can we even hope to make a difference in the world if we are operating within the energetic paradigms of scarcity and limitation for and on ourselves? While acknowledging the privilege of the space with regards to access to internet connection, our plates of food (virtual dinner party!) and abilities to sustain ourselves through work, there was a common thread between all the participants. We all have walked journeys that have taken us deep into the abyss of pain; an avenue of relating to one another, in that through our suffering, and isolation – our most abundant creativity was ignited. Some of us were in the thick of this, and could speak openly; others were more observant, holding space for these revelations to come through. Self-care, healing, and cultivation of awareness and stillness were noted as the ultimate acts of spiritual cleanliness. Learning to integrate the fabric of space and time between work is a matter of necessity for healthy, abundant artists; and the honesty and integrity of this sentiment went beyond my expectation for the series. Rharha and Ana urged us to take on the task of caring for ourselves and each other within community and collaboration; not competition. There is enough space at the table for authenticity and originality; something each of us has within, unique to us. Let us move away from this copy + paste dialogue of vapid content, and look within; let us bring forth our own unique blueprint of creation and co-create a world beyond our wildest dreams.

Connection, collaboration and craft are the tenets of what I strive for in envisioning a future for humanity that is sustainable for all sentient beings. Without speaking these words, I witnessed these principles weave together throughout the evening; and from the deepest parts of my heart, I thank Ana, her team; Mir, Vincent, Aris, Blanca, Antía, Mati, Edu, Aida, Maria C., Esther, Pascale, Maria F., Luz, Marina, Gara, Sofi, Maria R. and of course; Rharha for continually creating worlds upon worlds for this beautiful planet. I hope to join the forthcoming series of The Now; which is off to an incredible start.

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