I got this | Time Capsules

Madonna 1983 ish 2 tumblr_76136949b6ab94a17f4d73805bd47396_b45e4187_500There is a story of Madonna having her “Do I really want this?!” moment. It were the years before she had made it, and on top of the poverty, the endless hustling and the uncertainty of never knowing if YOU can really make it despite the odds, she had a really bad experience that would have been enough to discourage the bravest of us.

She stared at the wallpaper, horrified and fighting her racing thoughts, alone in her tiny room.
Perhaps it was even the cockroach infested one where she left the door open, because it had been forced open so many times, she chose to not lock it in the first place.

The whole night she pondered, she doubted, and she was well aware that this was the right moment to quit. To give up her dream.
Or did she really want to continue?
We know the answer.

And it was that story I was reminded of today.

I had woken up after way too little sleep, for the second night in a row. And I stared at the ceiling like Madonna had been staring at the wallpaper. Only I did give up on my dreams.
Due to a series of events, and none of them remotely as serious as what Madonna pushed through, I saw no other option than to bail out on a career, on fame, on anything that looked proper and together.
I was going to 
abandon it all.

I wouldn’t even bother to save the good parts, and instead I would delete all my accounts, my blogs, my videos, and THEN ask Google to forget my name.
The rest of my life I would mysteriously live under the radar and be a writer under this alterego, but without ever making a public appearance again.
We know the answer.
Because when after hours of staring and contemplating in which exact order I was going to kill off my entire online identity, I had put so many elements back in, I had my entire plan back!
Bar one or two elements. It really wasn’t that big of a difference, but because in my mind I had deleted it all, and had only put back the things I really didn’t want to let go of, it felt so much lighter!

So by the time I got out of bed, I felt incredibly joyful about my new life!

The darkest days of 2022 brought me the best breakthrough, that I really, really needed.

What the past week did teach me, was that I wasn’t ready. Just like Madonna must have been aware that she needed to get out of that hellhole and free herself from the misery that she could control, I spent the whole day cleaning my online life up.
And suddenly the things that I ve known needed to get done, some of them for years;
They suddenly, and perhaps unsurprisingly, got done.

And I knew it.
I got this.

~Lauren/LS Harteveld
An unexamined life is not worth living

since 2018 my official blog is: https://laurenharteveld.com/
Currently featuring my 1997 diary and letters to my coach Sara.

ABOUT TIME CAPSULES 

My time capsules are a written out collection of things that I have come into contact with, and that will influence my art.

The project is Inspired by Warhol, who created one time capsule (box) a month, collecting physical objects.

Time Capsules is a stand-alone project.
You cannot subscribe to this blog, but you can follow Time Capsules on
Facebook
and
Twitter

My diaries en erotica are available in my BOOK SHOP

 

Never forget who you are| Time Capsules

Clipping from an early 21st century Elle, that I identified with as being the writer me, LS Harteveld.

Clipping from an early 21st century Elle, that I identified with as being the “writer me”, LS Harteveld. I ve always felt more like her than like my real self, and often dress similarly to her.

It seems ironic that out of all people I am the one who writes a post about staying true to your own identity.
Because I have had an alterego,
this alterego of LS Harteveld, since 2006.

This was before I identified with Basic Instinct’s Catherine Tramell. I have loved Sharon Stone’s portrayal of her since the release of the movie in 1992, and even copied her clothing style to a degree, and still do to this day;
But in the 90s and early 00s I never identified as being so bold in my sexuality, nor as being a writer.

So although I would later write many blogpost of how I identified with Catherine Tramell being my role model for being a writer, it wasn’t “her” that lead the way, in 2006 when I started writing.

It was something else:
A fashion shoot for denim in a glossy, I think it was in Elle.
This was how I identified myself, when I decided how to define myself. 
Years later I made a promotional photo inspired by this clipping, and I used it on the cover of my collected works “Het Boek Benjamin”.

Both the book about my love for Catherine Tramell, “The Beach, C” (2021)
as well as “Het Boek Benjamin” with the cover photo can be found in my bookstore at Lulu:
https://www.lulu.com/spotlight/LaurenandLulu 

Since it’s 30 years after Basic Instinct and 20 years after that Elle, when I say “Never forget who you are”, I clearly do not mean there is some super authentic, deeper down version of your universal self, that defines you more, than movie stars or clippings.
No, I mean your true identity is defined by things you were automatically drawn to right from the first moment you saw them.

And there is a good chance it were things (works of art, or performances) that were designed to speak to an audience and to tell a story. And this will have made it all the more difficult to understand that they struck a deeper chord with you.
That what you were feeling was important.

I have had a few of those defining moments, and I have transported or started using many of them, for my work under my real name.
And it feels good: It feels like the identity under my real name is growing in authenticity, as I am giving “her” the same freedom to be who she is, and have her own identity, just like I gave it to LS Harteveld all those years ago.
But this automatically means that although those elements have been present here, under my work of LS Harteveld, they no longer are.
Part of the stories, and memories, will no longer be covered here, because I moved them to my “new”, real identity.

But there are aspects of myself,  which will always stay here.
That will always be LS Harteveld, and that will never be anything else.

The sexual part, the Catherine Tramell part, the Carrie Bradshaw part, the having a lover I call Big part; 
But also, way more general, the me “A Writer” part! 
Which is, as I said in my previous Time Capsule as well, the largest part of me.
That identity, my true identity, will only, ever, be LS Harteveld.

That part of me that shows up for her writing, in the same way Carrie Bradshaw showed up for love. As she said in the final (double) episode of Sex and the City, when she breaks up with her last boyfriend before ultimately returning to Mr.Big;

“I am someone who is looking for love. Real love.
Ridiculous, inconvenient, consuming, can’t-live-without-each-other love.
And I don’t think that love is here, in this expensive suite, in this lovely hotel, in Paris.”

Regardless of how successful I will ever be under my real name, and how lovely it will all be, that ridiculous, inconvenient, consuming, can’t-live-without-each-other love?
That can only be found here.

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~Lauren/LS Harteveld
An unexamined life is not worth living

since 2018 my official blog is: https://laurenharteveld.com/
Currently featuring my 1997 diary and letters to my coach Sara.

ABOUT TIME CAPSULES 

My time capsules are a written out collection of things that I have come into contact with, and that will influence my art.

The project is Inspired by Warhol, who created one time capsule (box) a month, collecting physical objects.

Time Capsules is a stand-alone project.
You cannot subscribe to this blog, but you can follow Time Capsules on
Facebook
and
Twitter

My diaries en erotica are available in my BOOK SHOP

 

I would choose this life if I knew how| Time Capsules

Carrie Bradshaw download (6)It’s been 8 months since I made a time capsule and I m resisting the urge to reread the last one. But I could see the photo (a vision board photo of a business woman with red lipstick) and  understood the general gist of the post.
About finding a business or success identity, no doubt.

It’s not that it didn’t stick, it’s just that all my Lauren Harteveld work has been marginalized over the winter. I let it because I just didn’t know what to do with it. I have three Lauren Harteveld blogs, but only use the third one with the exception of brief outbursts on this one you re reading right now (a blog that doesn’t give out notifications and you can’t subscribe to it, which allows me to write as often as I like without feeling I m burdening people), and an occasional burst of enthusiasm on my Dutch blog.

For years I ve only been using my third blog, and by now I only use it for two things:
Letters to my creativity coach and diary entries from Lauren 1997.
All other topics and series, things I started in the Covid years, have fallen by the wayside.

Lauren 1997 is my performance art project, where I identify as if I am Lauren Harteveld in 1997, which is a double challenge. Because not only am I in reality 25 years older, and reality looks quite different now. This is already two things, I realize now: My body/ me is 25 years older AND the world has moved on 25 years.
But let’s count that as one.
And then the second challenge is that Lauren Harteveld is an alterego. I am not, Lauren Harteveld. At least not on paper. But I FEEL more Lauren Harteveld than I feel “real me”.

There is a Dutch movie from 1981, High Heels, Real Love (Dutch trailer below post) where a CEO goes undercover in his own company because he envies the comradery of the workers.
He starts a relationship with a woman who works at the cafeteria, and the whole situation gets very explosive when in he also compliments her in his real identity as CEO.
Under his alterego, he challenges his real self to a duel.
The movie ends with him choosing his alterego identity over his real life.

And I remember a similar case, although only vaguely because I didn’t watch the show, but it was a British television program where you learned a new profession in a relatively short time, and went undercover as a professional or as a trainee, with a new name.
There was one candidate, I believe his new name was Mike and his new profession bouncer, who stayed in his new role.
He refused to come out because he liked his new life better, where nobody knew who he really was.

There are some aspects I would love to keep from 2022: I love blogging for example, and that didn’t exist in 1997.
I can be a writer in 2022 without anybody’s help, and I can write a lot. I don’t have to go through the process of editing and cleaning up an entire novel: I blog, I write multiple time a week and instead of cleaning up the old I write something new.
Under my real name I have now decided on a structure for my work, by taking it online. And although I never planned to be so rigid, and to no longer have a real-life professional life as an independent, once I had decided on taking all of my art online and stop being available as a professional in the real world. it clicked and I m now very happy with it.
It is as if my real self is only an avatar, a virtual identity.

And the full creative freedom I now have under my real name, is unprecedented and would not have been possible in 1997.
So I like that.

But the irony is that as the months went by, and my mission and work became clear, I grew quiet here. LS Harteveld got quiet, even though as always, this is the most important part of me.

The reason I grew quiet is because I desire to remain unknown here.
With my work being online under my real name, I do not want the paths to cross, and I write as little as possible. I only use the third blog, and only for Lauren 1997 diary and my letters to Sara, the two must-dos.
The diary, because it IS the performance project. Writing Lauren’s 1997 diary is the closest thing to being Lauren.
And the letter to my coach is my way of preparing for our call and communicating with her.

But it feels strange to not write more for these accounts, of LS Harteveld. And if I could choose an identity, I would choose to be LS Harteveld or Lauren 1997, and drop all my work under my real name and give it to her instead.

I think I am LS Harteveld, undercover in my real life.
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~Lauren/LS Harteveld
An unexamined life is not worth living

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ABOUT TIME CAPSULES 

My time capsules are a written out collection of things that I have come into contact with, and that will influence my art.

The project is Inspired by Warhol, who created one time capsule (box) a month, collecting physical objects.

Time Capsules is a stand-alone project.
You cannot subscribe to this blog, but you can follow Time Capsules on
Facebook
and
Twitter

My diaries en erotica are available in my BOOK SHOP

One With The Work. One With God And Purpose. | Time Capsule

This stock photo was one of the key pieces in understanding what my professional side needed to thrive.

This stock photo was one of the key pieces in understanding what my professional side needed to thrive.

Wednesday morning August 25,
2021

This is the most abstract time capsule so far, because it doesn’t have an external source I can link to.
It’s something I needed to figure out and get clear on, and not so much a direct artistic inspiration like the other topics that inspired me.
What I discuss today will influence my work, but only in an abstract way.

It’s about how to frame what it is I do.

I was already in a final crossing t’s and dotting i’s phase, because a few weeks ago I figured out what the framing, the freedom-based form, needed to be for any paid work that was going to be long term sustainable and satisfying.

I had the title, the words that resonated with me, to know I would never face the same problems again of not understanding why job/ professional situations that were perfectly okay and even desirable for others, did not and would not, ever work for me.
After decades I finally knew, not what was wrong with me;
But what was right.

The paradox was;
My best work, the one you would want to aim for, save, nourish, laminate and never let go?
That was what had been created in full freedom.

And it was like a drug, that was only supplied to me when I respected that the work needed to be created in full freedom.

Anytime I forced myself to be more outcome focused, limit myself, and yield my work so that I would be able to do it more efficiently, label it better, package it up, sell it?
I don’t know if the work suffered, but I did!

I felt deprived of the sweet flowing creative juices I had become addicted to.

So long story short;
Yes, I was happy when I had found a few words, a marker, something to look out for and recognize red flags and such, to get an understanding of when that drug, my best work, and the creative flow could come, and when it would not.
In which case I was better off straight up working for money in an area that made the most money or an area that had other benefits such as great colleagues, connection and meaning;
And I was worse off if I connected it to any areas I loved.

However in hindsight there were two things missing.
And this morning I am able to see those two missing pieces.

Because only knowing you need full creative freedom, is still quite vulnerable you know?
It’s like knowing you should not be smoking, but only as an idea. An “I should”, and then you give it a go.
But it won’t last.

Just like a smoker who wants to quit smoking because it was killing them, I wanted to stop limiting, altering, and cleaning up my work because that was killing it.
But just like them I needed two things:

1. A WHY
I needed to know my personal and emotionally charged reason to want it.
WHY, did I want my work to come out unaltered, and why did I need the thrill of being in creative flow?

and the other thing quitting smokers and me needed:

2. Understanding the function the habit had
I needed to understand the pattern, the reasons, behind me defaulting to this. Obviously altering my work, planning it, restricting myself was giving me something. Or I would not be so prone to it, and quitting it would not have to be such an undertaking, including relapses because I ve been trying to quit planning and limiting myself for years.
I needed to understand what was in it for me.

And today, this morning, I figured it out.

The penny dropped when I was studying the topic of hustle culture and burnout by successful people, and how they all regretted having spent so much time on their work and missing out on family time, friends, and even love.
The message was:
“Don’t hustle, don’t strive so much. Focus on the things that matter!”
And as much as I agreed with that, I knew that by prioritizing my friends and family, I would not be happy.
That’s when I saw the bigger picture:

To me my work IS the priority. I don’t feel alive unless I write, create, and communicate THROUGH my work.
Not only is being in communication with my work required, before I can communicate in real life, but many people I know read my work and relate to me through my work.
I would not be able to show up in the real world, if I had not first invested in my daily creative work.

For a moment one step back to the “I don’t feel alive” part;
The creative satisfaction, the feeling of flow, purpose, being one with God, only comes when I am fully absorbed and do whatever wants to be done.
The dopamine rush is (unfortunately) not limited to blogging or other art forms that are pret-a-porter and can be posted!
I ve also “lost” days to archiving my notebooks, to creating vision board cards, sorting out old downloads and other files. 
They were such good days that at night I would write in my diary:
“I had such an amazing day!!’
Also realizing that I had not seen anyone. That technically, in a worldly sense, I had not made any connections.
And yet I went to sleep with a blush on my cheeks as if I had a new lover.

So what I found out is this:

The work I am here to do in this world, is a fully submerged, timeless experience of totally being one with the work.
Whatever the work is that day or at that moment.
It is the moment I come alive and can feel God, The Universe, Life, flowing through me. And because there isn’t any resistance I would describe this experience of working, as the most satisfying human experience imaginable.
And coming from someone who loves sex, that is saying something.

But the reason I want to plan things, steer towards a certain outcome, the reason I want to (plan to) create something I can post, for all of my three main outlets, where this work for LS Harteveld is just one of them;
That reason is because I want that connection with other people.

I am afraid I will get isolated, in all ways both professionally as well as personally, if I don’t show up because I m submerged in my work.
That I have make a connection in my case online, and that I have to share my work in order for it to have value for other people.
There is a fear that I will not be loved nor paid, to be offline or to do other forms of deep work.
That I have to show up online, and therefor must push and plan, for work to have a visible, shareable outcome. 

The reason I fall prey to wanting to plan my work, and post every day for all my accounts, and run the risk of burnout, just like those Type A hustlers who regret it later;
Is because I still feel I need to do that to be successful.
Guilty as charged.

But unlike the hustle culture, for me posting those things is also connected to my social life. I connect over the internet in pretty much the same way as I do in real life, and I do not have children or a partner, who do not get attention if I work too much.
So my payoff for hustling, in the sense of delivering something of value and making a (whether paid or not) connection, is more than just money.
It is human connection.
Love.

And The Work?
The work burned out Type A hustlers tell us we should not be prioritizing so much, and focus on the things that matter, and that you will remember when you are on your deathbed?
The work, that they say we should not make so important because it ultimately isn’t?

That work is the closest connection I have, to God.

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~Lauren/LS Harteveld
An unexamined life is not worth living

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timecapsuletwoABOUT TIME CAPSULES 

My time capsules are a written out collection of things that I have come into contact with, and that will influence my art.

The project is Inspired by Warhol, who created one time capsule (box) a month, collecting physical objects.

Time Capsules is a stand-alone project.
You cannot subscribe to this blog, but you can follow Time Capsules on
Facebook
and
Twitter

 

1994 project’s secret twin | Time Capsule

Tuesday morning August 24,
2021/ 1996 (1996 performance project)

“At work, my primary tools would be paper
— a kind of very, very thin, stiff, dry, fragile fabric for writing on —
pens, and my landline desk phone.”

from:
the 1994 time travel article in the New York Times

 

This morning I started the official, dedicated study of Generation X;
The cohort born between 1965 and 1975/1980, depending on who you ask.

If you ask the New York Times, they will say “until 1980″, but will offer anyone born between late 70s early 80s, the Xennials, a very compassionate article, including a test to determine if you’re officially Gen X-er or no.

But, in what is probably their most factual/ inspirational article, the writer explained that it could very well be that generation X is extremely small;
Maybe even as small as 8 years.

Most people I know who ever copped to X-ness were born in the later ’60s or early ’70s,
a window of maybe eight years.

(My wife was born in 1979 and has no idea who Fonzie is. Case closed.)

My favorite NYT Gen X story by Alex Williams
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/14/style/gen-x-millenials.html 

I found the Alex Williams story and the Xennial test in what I will call New York Times’ ”mainframe article” on Gen X.
As little as I know about computers I imagine the term mainframe, to be a very generational thing, that few born outside the 1965-1980 would use.

This is that New York Times mainframe article, that lead me to all others:
This Gen X Mess

Another article found through this mainframe article, was an a one-week experiment to try and live 25 years ago.
I had stumbled upon the secret twin from my own project!

In 2019 I started a time travel project, then called 1994.
You can find this very first year of posts here, but the project is already in its third year.
Despite the many setbacks, most notably my lover breaking up late 2019/1994, which threatened to make my 1995 diary incredibly boring.
And then there was the pandemic limiting story lines in 1995 to current day;
Despite those things it is my longest running project to date.

But I had no idea that it had a twin! That someone else, in this case the New York Times had also come up with the idea to revisit this year.
And although I had been aware what Generation X was, I was unaware that my 1994 project was “A Gen X” thing.
And that our generational clock, was indicating it was time to take a trip down memory lane.

For a week or three years, depending how much you were prepared to invest.

And boy, does the author of that article take things seriously! 
Where my project has been more a narrative, a way to tell personal stories without actually diary writing in current day; 
This project DOES go all in!

Without cell phone, email, and so on.

I m so happy I found this gem, and it will bring my own 1994/1996 (now) project to an entirely new level of commitment for my own project to live as if it is 25 years ago.
Maybe, for the very first time since starting this project in 2019 (1994), I feel it has been offered a pair of wings.
Analog, grungy, 1996 originals, wings! 

I never finished the mainframe article on Generation X, and jumped straight into the 1994 project.
It was so amazing to find a kindred spirit after two years of doing this project by myself!

The articles are paid, you will get one or a few for free.
But when I had used those up, I subscribed to The New York Times, a
n act that can get you into trouble in some circles.
I m not exactly sure why NYT is a paper non grata, but since their mainframe article with all the other extra articles is such a treasure chest, I absolute want unlimited access to it.

And besides, so what if The New York Times is not PC, and I m not supposed to subscribe?

If Generation X is known for anything;
It’s for being the most skeptic and rebellious of the whole lot.

 

~Lauren/LS Harteveld
An unexamined life is not worth living

I expect the next time capsule to be written tomorrow, Wednesday August 25.

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timecapsuletwoABOUT TIME CAPSULES 

My time capsules are a written out collection of things that I have come into contact with, and that will influence my art.

The project is Inspired by Warhol, who created one time capsule (box) a month, collecting physical objects.

Time Capsules is a stand-alone project.
You cannot subscribe to this blog, but you can follow Time Capsules on
Facebook
and
Twitter

 

The Dragonfly | Time Capsule

dragonfly6On Saturday morning 21 August, around 6.30 and after another terrible and yet at the same time inspiring night because I found a few pieces that had been missing from the puzzle of my life;
I woke up and knew that I had 3, 4 hours sleep tops, and decided to try and get back to sleep, after I had checked on the cats, and made arrangements for them to be okay the first hours of the day.

I cleaned out their litter boxes, opened the curtains, gave them dry food, and opened the balcony door.
When I was back in bed I heard one cat growling which he does when he has caught something.

I wondered what it was, since it was too light for moths or those brown beetles he catches at night.
It was a dragonfly.

It required more effort to be caught and evacuated than beetles and moths, and I was a bit scared of him.
But I was also very grateful he was making it out alive.
He took off out of my bedroom window. 

Back in bed I wondered what the spiritual meaning of the dragonfly was.
Since I found it peculiar my cat caught it, after such an intense dark night of the soul, and when I had never seen a dragonfly here before, ever.
I think the spiritual meaning of the dragonfly must have been even more easy to Google than its biological characteristics, because it popped up immediately;

“In almost every part of the world, the Dragonfly symbolizes change, transformation, adaptability, and self-realization.

The change that is often referred to has its source in mental and emotional maturity and understanding the deeper meaning of life.”

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Next episode of Time Capsules

I expect to write the next time capsule tomorrow, Tuesday 24 August.

~Lauren/LS Harteveld
An unexamined life is not worth living

 

timecapsuletwoABOUT TIME CAPSULES

My time capsules are a written out collection of things that I have come into contact with, and that will influence my art.

The project is inspired by Warhol, who created one time capsule (box) a month, collecting physical objects.

Time Capsules is a stand-alone project.
You cannot subscribe to this blog, but you can follow Time Capsules on
Facebook
and
Twitter

 My diaries en erotica are available in my BOOK SHOP

The Plague | Time Capsule

What inspired me Friday 20 August 2021 

The Plague

I went to the final days of the exhibition The Plague at our local museum.
And it was so timely.

It was very impressive to see, and realize, the tremendous suffering the plague has caused to all our ancestors, who have been living with the plague which came in waves from before BC  (Asia and Greece) until the 19th century, when a cure was found and all areas with access to medicine have been able to neutralize it.

wiki : The Plague 

It put a welcome perspective to our current pandemic, and to see that “we’ve had worse”.
Although a word of caution;
Just like with the aids epidemic in Africa, pandemics and how badly they are felt is often so closely related to wealth.
If good food is scarce, that is always the most important problem.

But it is not only about feeling gratitude that Covid itself is less deadly, and that we in The Netherlands do not have that level of poverty medieval Europe had;
It’s also a sense of being happy we know so much more about hygiene now.

In African cultures and also in Jewish culture, hygiene has been at a much higher plane, throughout history. And this has provided protection. 
But Medieval Europe had an oppressive, unnatural, ruling style, that kept the church in power and that demonized other knowledge such as natural medicine.
You could be burned at the stake for that.

Medieval Europe was a place devoid of natural, local wisdom, which could have provided hygiene and rules of living, that would have been able to limit the impact.
Just like the African and Jewish cultures had, and have, their wisdom, protecting them.
While we lived, I think, in an absolute hellhole.

236384398_4484768614878129_8721321563438532848_nWhen the Renaissance came, which had less to do with enlightenment and was more like Middle-Ages The Sequel, the church was ultimately thrown out, but not before they successfully executed their most ruthless killing spree of witches.
But ultimately, yes, science did take over.

During this pandemic we now look to modern medicine, with the same devotion as we once did to the church.
We make them all powerful, and typing this I do wonder what we’d have in place if the  local wisdom had been able to develop here too.

Instead of having it wiped out, and then almost artificially replaced by science.

After the exhibition I went to this hall with the oldest remains of civilization.
On the photo you see a horse and a horseman, objects from the Batavi, who lived from 50 BC to 300 AD.
These object where found in Nijmegen, where the Batavi largely co-existed with the Romans.

I wonder how life in 2021 would have looked, if the Batavi had had a say in how we live today.
Instead of basically, having replaced one church for another.

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Next episode of Time Capsules

This is the first time capsule dedicated to one topic, and I really liked that, since it allowed me to dig in a little deeper.

I expect to write the next time capsule tomorrow, Monday 23 August.

~Lauren/LS Harteveld
An unexamined life is not worth living

 

timecapsuletwoABOUT TIME CAPSULES

My time capsules are a written out collection of things that I have come into contact with, and that will influence my art.

The project is inspired by Warhol, who created one time capsule (box) a month, collecting physical objects.

Time Capsules is a stand-alone project.
You cannot subscribe to this blog, but you can follow Time Capsules on
Facebook
and
Twitter

 My diaries en erotica are available in my BOOK SHOP