"Performance Art Metaphor- Lifest Christian Music Festival"
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Presenter: Larry_Seiler, -Artist

Over the years of my artistic life I have had the pleasure to experience many unique happenings from receiving prestigious artist painter's awards in state and regional competitions, to performing and ministering as a musician/frontman to large crowds.  Remember those big hair 80's days? 

These days, by default of age no doubt...I'm more comfortable performing in those up close and personal smaller coffeehouse venues with my own blend of original blues and folk.  Needless to say, perhaps my personal favorite moments have been my involvement with the larger Christian music festivals, not as a musician but as a visual artist.  For roughly seven years, I had been involved with Illinois's Cornerstone Music Festival's art fest within the fest called, "Artrageous" as a speaker, workshop instructor, and gallery participant.

More recently, I had the pleasure of hooking up with Lifest Music Festival held in Oshkosh, Wisconsin as a presenter/speaker.  I chose to expand upon a presentation I had given to public high school assemblies that dealt with drinking and motivation.  In preparation, I first painted a large 6' x 4' black and white acrylic depicting a young English Setter puppy my wife and I once had.

Jazz, was an incredible little pup and a delight to my wife and two sons.  He was one of the most intelligent dogs we've ever known at even so young an age.  His nose was incredible, and we could take any toy even at about 8-10 weeks, let him smell it...hide it without him seeing it, and watch him find it.  As a bird hunter, I had great expectations of good times in the field with Jazz as he grew up.

Unfortunately, we were given the worst news by our veterinarian when Jazz was just five months old.  He had been having difficulty breathing with bouts of sudden weakness, so we brought him in for examination.  Within a couple days, we were told the little guy had a heart three times it's size.  Congenital heart disease.  His heart had little leaks, filling his lungs with blood making breathing difficult.  It was the doctor's immediate recommendations that our little pup be put to sleep.

It was a hard thing for our family to accept, but we knew we had to do what was best for the dog to end his suffering.  

The morning of the trip to the vet's, everyone said their goodbyes to Jazz, (my wife having to go off to work...and my sons to school).  I was left alone, and found myself (a grown northwoods rough and tough man) sitting on the floor with the little guy.  It was an odd sense of power I did not like.  That is, knowing I could put off the trip just perhaps another hour or so..

So there I was sitting on the kitchen floor, and I began to cry...all 6'- 200 n'some pounds of me, and I pulled the little guy to myself.  I was not prepared for what Jazz would do next.  He stretched his head up and began to lick the tears right off my cheek.  I really lost it then!
 
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