Asia.gay has sat down with PULSE Chief Executive Officer Dr. Deyn to discover his inspiration behind the upcoming PULSE Awards. Below is the excerpt of the interview.
Asia.gay : What was the inspiration behind setting up these Awards? Did you visit some art exhibitions, or have you always been interested in art and art making?
Dr. Deyn : During my childhood I lived next door to the Arts and Craft College. I’ve always dreamed to be both a physician and an artist because I am fascinated by life, light, shapes, forms and colours but everyone told me “Don’t become an artist you’re gonna be poor.”
PULSE is literally the most important sign of life, created from the heart. So these Awards are my message to people around the world that if you love something and you have dreams, you have to listen to your heart and do what you love. Be inspired and live on to inspire other people with your love. There are people who love you and want to support you and root for you.
I know this because in the process of growing up, I was surrounded by many people who loved art and wanted to support artists. I want to be a part of society that makes art and supports people who make it.
The fire for art and creation is still burning in me. As I no longer have to go to med school or work as hard as before, I want to spend time to develop myself and grow together with fellow artists.
Asia.gay : Why this year? Was there something about the pandemic that inspired you to launch these Awards, or does it have to do with Pulse’s current success throughout Asia?
Dr. Deyn : Why this year? Because from the age of 14 to 24, I was busy working to become a doctor. Between 24 to 34, I was working hard to pay off debts and started my own tiny little clinic which has since grown into 14 branches in 5 countries so far. So now there’s more time for art and creativity.
It’s 2021, and these are our first Awards. Easy to remember, isn’t it? LOL. More seriously, since 2019 the world has stopped, and people have become depressed, unhappy and upset. Many think that people don’t or can’t have sex anymore. But that’s not true at all, the number of HIV/STD infections remains high and we have to stop it. Not to mention emerging STIs such as mycoplasma and Ureaplasma which you may not even know about, but you might actually have it. This might cause complications to pregnancies, and that means our next generation. The new generation nowadays have much more awareness in gender, sex, sexuality. We were born, raised and live our life around this matter. So, I want to simply raise awareness that sexual health matters as much as sexual-mental health.
After years of social suppression (exclusion?) and depression, I think it’s time for us to feel some love, view some art, be more aware of the things in life that matter. But we don’t talk enough about things like sex, gender, sexuality, sexual health, mental health, or support people who are working hard to make our world a better place and pass on our legacy of wisdom and creativity to the next generation.
Also, with the support from my partner and our friends, I think it’s time for us to make this happen. I’ve been waiting for this all my life.
Asia.gay : You spoke about creativity and raising awareness, normalising attitudes, etc. As PULSE’s Medical Director and a practising doctor, do you also believe in the power of art to heal? What are your thoughts on this?
Dr. Deyn : The power to heal lies in many things in the universe. Art is one of them. Art has a power to heal and it’s not just a “belief”. It’s the “truth”. There are a lot of scientific literature and real-life proofs for this. There are connections between art, healing, individual holistic health and public health!
You may not be able to get rid of your illnesses, pain or trauma, but you can definitely use art and the power in art to keep you mentally OK and to stay alive. We can always transform trauma and pain into beauty and even inspire the world.
If you have studied artists like Michelangelo, Goya, Dalí, van Gogh, Munch, Yayoi Katsuma, Ulay & Marina, or my friend Christian Develter, you’ll see it. They find healing power in creativity. And personally, throughout my life and all the difficulties I’ve been through, I know that art is my medicine.
Asia.gay : Can you tell us more about the judging criteria?
Dr. Deyn : Generally speaking, anything can be related to sex, and sex is related to health. So anything can be related to sexual health. Flowers are very sexual. Animals are sexual. Humans are very sexual – human minds are incredibly sexual. God, gods and goddess are totally sexual. Leather, high heels, muscles, bulge, curvy lines, candles…. anything at all. Anything can be related to sex and sexual health depend on how you think of it and how you express it.
We are looking for creative minds with talents and skills, who have something in their minds and use their skills to deliver their messages well. Also, we’re looking for someone original.
If God has created human minds to be sexual, then God is definitely sexual and I am sure that the same God would want us to care more about sexual health and sexual mental health. Let’s find out those who can express it!
Asia.gay : Finally, as the categories are quite general, can you share more with us about the kind of submissions you hope to see?
Dr. Deyn : The categories – 2D art, 3D art, photography, ceramic, and digital art – are general because, as we mentioned, the purpose of these Awards is to raise awareness and to discover and support rising stars so we want more people to join and be part of it – the more the better. The party is more fun when there are more people.
We want to see works that are original – never seen before, never heard before, never felt before.
Ideally, we want something that makes people go “wow” or gives people “Globe luxation” – which is a medical term for when an eyeball protrudes or “pops” out of the eye socket LOL – or even makes people drool. Something that, when we experience it, we are made acutely aware that “Yes, this is important!”
We don’t mind provocative art. In fact, we love it if an artist’s emotion gets people emotional or if an artist’s trauma makes people become aware.
We will be looking for original ideas that respond directly to the theme — works that are emotional and personal to the artists. But also, we would like to see a certain skill level that demonstrates that the artists have put time and energy into improving the skills in their practice with their chosen mediums. Experimental pieces are welcome, and we hope to see artists step out of the box a bit…
For more information on Submission Guidelines, Key Deadlines & Terms, and Conditions, please visit this PULSE Awards Official webpage.
Please visit this page for REGISTRATION of PULSE AWARDS 20201