Angelos Michalopoulos - Biography

Angelos Michalopoulos INTRODUCTION:

History always chooses an original way to repeat itself. If this wasn’t so, we would all become infallible, wise and very succesful by simply absorbing book knowledge and repeating in the future what was proven right in the past. Since reading someone’s bio is like trying to drive a car while looking only in the rearview mirror, why do we think that by examining his past we will find out who he will become in the future? A person’s future is rarely content with being merely an accurate copy of his past, so please allow me to tell you who I am.

Wedged between the trophies and the ruins of my life I write, tightly grasping in my right hand the strongest emotion I feel at the moment, and with it start to blaze new trails in my soul, hoping to reach those parts of hers that never wished to be mine. Since my way of life forced me to constantly stumble on my biggest shortcomings, over the years I’ve come to know myself pretty well. Besides, I never learned how to defend myself from what I wanted to be, not even from what my truth wanted to make of me. Leafing through my soul along with my truth, over the years she taught me to realize which part of my happiness I had already hidden in her before I started climbing to conquer what I thought was the peak of my life at the time. Indeed, what more is an artist than an explorer of emotions who finds a way to rush into the viewer’s soul and reactivate emotions he had not been in contact with for a long time, taking them out into the light so that they can reintroduce themselves to him and start feeling again on his behalf?

Since art is born during those moments in one’s life when his tears stop weeping and start asking questions, with every word I write I get introduced to who I already am by who I’ll never manage to be. When I begin to write I feel as if the moment my pencil touches the blank page a mirror jumps out of it and, without me realizing it, comes and stands at such an angle before me that I can see what I want to write reflected on the image of my soul I see on its surface. These are the moments when the ambiguity my favorite silence opted to keep inside it all these years selects from within my soul the words it wants to use to express all that I am yet unsure how I will ever manage to feel, hoping that, by distorting what I wish to hide, I will be able to create out of its echo what I wish I had the courage to say.

So I become a craftsman of emotions, a laborer who placing one word after another, ends up building a soul whose first wish is to take in hand the loudest cry she has in her and proclaim to the people around her how she hurts, how she loves, how she worries, how she needs to rejoice. By writing I cleanse my soul of her most precious emotions so I won’t pollute her with my most wretched thoughts. There are words, colors and verses that, no matter how experienced I am at keeping them inside me, burst out of my truth and then bang so hard on the doorway of my heart they almost smash it. It’s at this point that she, casting off her one by one all those useless words she cannot feel, is left naked until those words that are ready to defend her, to fight for what she feels, come to embrace her. Hence, the artist’s heart remains naked until she becomes his next truth.

To survive we need oxygen, to understand the reason we live we need passion. In the media he uses, the artist reveals his endeavor, the journey to find the honesty of what he feels. If he can stand to be honest with his soul, he tries to find in his work that part of hers he could never understand. If he is dishonest, he tries to conceal in his art the part of his logic he fears the most. Myself, as soon as I start working on something, I search like mad to locate my truth and persuade her to come with me for a while to help me build something that is part of my soul and not my mind. That’s why when facing the emptiness of a blank sheet of paper I stand before two gladiators that simultaneously live in it, the lies of my logic I must defeat and the truth of my soul I must embrace.

When art touches our soul it helps us find in us those words which, while reading them, we hear them narrate back to us a part of our own life. Without us realizing it, she embraces each word so tightly that the text stops living on the page and starts living within us. The miracle of art occurs when a poem, a painting or a piece of music is so emotionally honest that it manages to thrust into a person’s soul before his or her logic realizes what’s happening. Bad art is the reverse.

Lastly, I write for those who believe that a book’s home is in one’s soul and not one’s mind. I write for those who measure time in smiles, not minutes. I write for those who believe that each one of us is a revolution of good that must first defeat the evil inside us before we start confronting the evil around us. I was born in 1962, I have been married to my wife since I was twenty two, I have five children and I like to read my poems to my conscience before I begin to write them.