Black, White and Gray
38" x 30" $2,500.00
Tim Simpson, 20 years old,
Berkeley, California, USA
For Tim, most days are black and white.
Opposite moods will dominate his mind
and creativity: on one hand, the whimsical
and playful, on the other, the dark and
demonic. Every day Tim grapples with
Tourette's syndrome, which affects his
attention span, social interactions, and
logical thinking. This syndrome affects
each person differently. Some people
are only troubled by ticks, which are mani-
ested through jerky movements. Med-
ication can help to minimize these move-
ments. A stronger case of Tourette's syndrome is shown by an attention deficit, and in people more affected, occasional
or frequent socially inappropriate language, like blurted out obscene or non-sequential words and phrases.
Tim doesn't make jerky movements often, but he does say things that shock people. Another behavior that shows the
severity of Tourette syndrome and possibly another psychological condition in Tim is his excessive thoughts and behavior.
Sometimes he fears that dark aliens and demons will take over his mind, while other times, he likes the scariness of them.
Some of his sculptures, demonic in nature, seem to help him play out his fears so that he can accept his dark side and leave
his obsession behind. But oftenthese demons still haunt him. His other sculptures bring to surface the playful, carefree child
whose imagination is also soaring, but this time to a lighter place. Tim has a gift for writing poetry as well.
Tim is fortunate to contribute to and to have a very loving, caring family. He is full of an enthusiasm which, despite his
daily discouragements, keeps him full of creativity as he develops his artistry. He graduated from high school last year with
the help of a tutor who kept him motivated even when his attention waned. He wants to interact with the world in a way
that is acceptable and knows that as he matures he will have more control over his behavior. If he had a choice, however,
between the gift of a million dollars or a rationally functioning brain, his dream come true would be to have a new brain. I
understand Tim's yearning, yet I appreciate him the way he is: caring, personable and sensitive. I believe he understands the
subtlety of life's gray areas more than he realizes, and with time, he will also appreciate his immense talents and growing
capacity to feel comfortable with people. With time, he will lead a more independent life.
In Black, White and Gray, Tim's sculptures are unharnessed dreams, memories and realities. He never seems to censor his
emotions in his art, allowing the feeling of the moment to create each sculpture. My invented animal shapes that float
between the gray mat and the painting, tie together the black, white, and gray in Tim's life, his solid gray matter living in
harmony with his black, white, and multicolored imagination.
I walk in darkness on the devil's
path. He whispers to me " You
have not yet felt my wrath, and
when you do you may go home
to live forever all alone."
Specks of iridescent light come
from a star in the sky while
people below sleep in their beds.
Because of this light that comes
from the sky they forget their
fears and their dreads.
A Plea to the Good Spirits
Spirits of good in the dreamy
sky I call thee here tonight.
Midnight casts an evil spell to
take me where the devil dwells.
He who rules eternal hell and
I am in a fright.
Help me become brave enough
to destroy the force of night
and walk into the rainbow door
and face eternal light.
Athletes of the Spirit:
An Exploration of Disability
through Art and Writing