Love yourself for who you are
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Love yourself for who you are

Maria (grade 12) gave a beautiful and poignant speech to mark the official opening of the DP Art Exhibition. She was kind enough to let us share her words and wisdom.

By Maria, student grade 12

Welcome to our DP Art Exhibition! I can’t promise anything about its quality, but we really tried our bestest! I know this is not a word, but art is all about breaking different kinds of rules and norms, and I am an art student, so unfortunately or maybe fortunately you’ll have to bear with me for a while.

It is such an honor for me, standing here, talking in front of you. I am glad that you decided to sacrifice your precious free time to come to this exhibition.


Before we actually start, I wanted to delve you just a little bit into the themes of our works. I know that most of the DP art students of our school chose ‘identity’ or something related to this topic as the central theme of their exhibition. And I personally don’t think it is a coincidence.

Many teenagers go through this incredibly difficult period when they are confused about who they are and when they have a difficulty of truly understanding and loving themselves. When they struggle to accept their past mistakes, their past pain and struggles. And… I want to talk to you about it.

‘I wouldn’t ever be normal’

When I started making art as a DP art student, my initial theme was ‘irreversibility’. I believed, that everything that happened in my life damaged me completely with no return. I believed, that as long as there are those irreversible consequences that were caused by these events, I wouldn’t ever be normal.  I thought I couldn’t be the person that I so passionately strive to be.

And… well, at some point in this art journey I started questioning my beliefs. I asked myself: what is normal? And after some time I realized that everyone isn’t normal. Everyone is just… themselves. With their own past, their own mistakes and pain they had to go through. But here is the trick: everybody has their own method of healing from it and most of these methods don’t work.

‘Don’t create a time machine’

I realized that running away from my past isn’t something that would help me in the long run. Yes, maybe today I could pretend that it has never been there, but tomorrow it would haunt me again. I also realized that you can’t actually heal from your past, because these mistakes and pain are the only things that could heal you. They shaped you, and the only thing you can do about them is not trying to create a time machine, but rather trying to take advantage of them.

Try to let past experiences make you stronger. After all, these faults and mistakes are what you are; they make up the brightest stars in the constellation of our life. You have to come to love yourself for who you were, who you are, and who you hope to become.

So, DP art students and visitors of our exhibition! I love you all and I really hope you love yourselves too. Because you are truly amazing. And I think deep inside you know this.

Let the flowers of your past heal you the way they hurt you before. I wish you success at this task, and…

Enjoy our exhibition!