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Archive: Mar 2013

  1. My Art Proves Leonardo Da Vinci Wrong!

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    I recently quoted Leanardo Da Vinci, the highly accomplished and acclaimed artist on my FaceBook page  as saying that,"Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen." Soon after I posted this, it got me pondering at the truth of his statement. And someone made me even more curious by posting the following comment, "…there have been paintings i have stood before and felt something….i saw it and felt a stir in the innermost recesses of my being…..but Leonardo said this?

    Painting is poetry that is seen, but can't it be felt as well?

    In all or most of my paintings, I believe and try that my work should have a physical & emotional appeal, and to boot, as much texture as possible! So Leonardo the great, you are both right but also wrong!

    Proof

    I have quoted below, some comments about some of my work and how my paintings have evoked feelings when they were viewed:

    Melancholia

    – "Beautiful visually and works very well – tags at the heart."

    – "Stunning portraiture …totally evokes the emotion stated in your title…fabulous artistry!!"

    The Solace Without

    – "I love that the Spirit figure is lovingly cradling what could be a nest with small birds, or a whirlpool with beings at the center. Either symbol works for me. And he seems to be balancing everything, with his body position, keeping things level and in check, which again would symbolize the care given to our need for peace and restitution. Very thoughtful 

    and meaningful, Eddy"

    -"…I like the powerful emotion you display in this work of art. Just wonderful to study."

    Leaning On The Wall Of Recovery & Hope

    – " guess I could spend an hour analyzing and discussing this. Allow me now, just to say that, again, this is one of your finest works. It’s a beautiful story within a story— a child amazed at the largeness of a “human”, and our enchantment with the idea of creative imagination of the statue’s artist, and the artist’s tiny audience of one, under five years old, bound in amazement! But you go deeper, into the already three dimensional space, and tell another story about the art on the back wall, the backdrop of life, so to speak— history, shifting cultures, escape from the danger of one country to the relative safety of another; what is one man’s history is really the world’s history. And you anchor this story, figuratively and literally, with a candle of hope, chaining the two stories together, allowing us to draw analogies about the largess of mankind…"

    – "This work actually humbles me. It’s so moving and the thought process involved with the creation of the backdrop astounds me."

    He Prays While Watching Over Us

    – "Eddy, this now tops my favorites of yours. My gosh this is inspired, inspiring, and beautiful. I love the gorgeous hands. The sky full of mystery and promise, beautiful symbols, the meaningfulness of the work… all touch my soul." And here is one of my personal favorites,

    "Viewing your work is like having a “aesthetic orgasm of the senses”… if you don't mind me saying".

    Even Leo Tolstoy agrees with me when he was quoted as saying, "Art, he believes, is a sincere emotion transferred from an artist to others and, as such, is a uniquely human activity. Tolstoy defines genuine or real art as the communication of emotion transferable to, and felt by, all persons; consequently, art is to judged by the universal (religious) spirit of brotherhood of an age. Great art, he thinks, unites humanity." (Leo Tolstoy, What Is Art? Translated by Aylmer Maude. London: The Brotherhood Publishing Company. 1898)

    Thus art and painting for me is, a vehicle and a tool for making inner thoughts and feelings visible and, therefore, more objective. Thereby giving me an inner peace when that communication has taken place.

    The Proof Is Also In The Touch 

    touching_art2

    At a very early stage in my artistic development, I had come to realize that I needed an art form or style that could communicate to all human beings. Whether they were rich, poor, blind, deaf, young, old, I mean everyone. And to achieve this, I started to introduce texture to my paintings which made it possible for the visually challenged to enjoy and interpret my work for themselves.

    So while at a recent Art & Poetry workshop (see more photos in my Facebook Album, video on Youtube), I intimated participants, on the need to communicate feelings through art to all, even to the blind. I challenged them to interpret my art with their eyes as well as their hands. And though the interpretations were different, there was a consensus that something was being communicated by the artist to the viewer and the 'feeler'.

     

     

    touching_art3

     

    In conclusion, whether all of this should be considered a yardstick for measuring of good art is still under debate and has been for as long as I can remember, and might still be well after I'm gone. 

  2. A landscape painting and it’s Ubuntu relationship

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    Me and my art have lately been experiencing a renewed cum strange (but in a good way) sense of social responsibility revival. In the community where I live, I've been coming across signs of this everywhere I go.

    Taking my daughter to the nursery the other day, I saw this on the side of her school bus, "It takes a mother to bear a child, but it takes a village to raise that child" (taken from an old African proverb). Taking a second look on my way back, I couldn't help but to think how things like this influence my paintings,art, and me as a person.

    I've always loved things with deep meanings, be it words and/or images. They will make you think and ask relevant questions. I tend to see my art beyond it's physical attributes, and I value it's spiritual pontential and conotations even more.

    Let me cite an example of how this can often occur in my work. I produced a landscape painting a while ago, but I didn't finish it, because I believed, that it hadn't attained spiritual attributes yet. But after seeing that proverb on that school bus and reading about 'Ubuntu' (not linux) and what it meant, it suddenly lept out of my being and imprinted in my memory what this particular landscape was saying.

    Ubuntu Landscape

    Ubuntu Landscape

    Ubuntu is a philosophy if South African origin. With numerous definitions. But the most concise definition that I find most related to my work is this one, Ubuntu means in a nutshell,

    "I am what I am because of who we all are." Also meaning, "A person is a person by and because of other people".

    And that, is exactly was this painting stands for, those tiny homes all contributed to making that great big house. You can see, no, feel the force and energy of these people in the dramatic sky. 

    Nobody in the landscape and you are talking about people? Yes, deliberate but of no consequence to the effect of this painting. Why? Because I personified the houses (or call them homes) to represent communities and families together.

  3. Mixed Media Portrait Of Clint Eastwood

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    Harry Callahan, pl
    Harry Callahan, played by Clint Eastwood
    ayed by Clint Eastwood (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    This portrait was made a while ago, just discovered that I haven't posted it to the website's gallery yet. I've attempted to capture Clint's rugged looks and character in the hit movie, "Dirty Harry". Lots of rough texture was applied to help create the hard looks of dirty Harry's character.

    Medium: Acrylics, Acrylic heavy gel medium & Acrylic gesso
    Ground: Stretched & painted on Daler Rowney acid free 120lbs paper.
    Process: impasto, finger painting, brush, and pallete knife.

     

     

     

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  4. Portraiture & The Power Of Expression: Melancholia

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    Title: "Melancholia”
    Medium: Acrylics & paper collage
    Size: 16" X 21"

    Mel·an·cho·li·a 
    /ˌmelənˈkōlēə/
    Noun
    1. Deep sadness or gloom; melancholy.
    2. A mental condition marked by persistent depression and ill-founded fears.

     

    Melancholia- small

     

    This is my attempt at using portraiture to evoke an emotion through the subject's facial expression. I paid particular attention to the eyes and tried to show, the powerful effect of the eyes in portraits. I've found that if done properly, it can help to make a simple looking portrait to transform into a powerful artistic statement.

    To further enhance a portrait painting, sometimes subtle or bold visual symbols and colors can dramatically change the effect of the painting. This I have done via my use of color and the deliberate blotting of the subject's mouth to give a feeling of eerily forced silence but at the same time, having an overall expression packed full of stories in those eyes. I enjoyed this a lot and I will be looking into to producing more like this in future.

  5. Painting As A Compliment To A Prayer

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    Here's one of my latest paintings:

    Title: He Prays While Watching Over Us

    Size: 38.5cm X 50.5cm
    Medium: Acrylics, oil pastels (mixed media), Collage, glue, paper maché
    Ground: Stretched Paper

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    This painting is inspired by the greatest inspiration of all, Jesus Christ and those verses in the bible that depicts him as a great teacher of prayer and peace, constantly watching over us (and still watching). Looking back & ahead of my life, I realize that someone is not only watching over me (us), but also, he is constantly advocating for me and all that is mine. 

    I filled the sky and the background with symbols of life and growth, with the five houses in the bacground represents the continents of our world. His robes I painted in regal and life colors (because he gives life & is of royal priesthood) and repeating the textures of the sky too, further enhancing his link to life, power, and growth. Every color, every stroke, and every texture focused on his radiating energy. I also delibrately stylized his hand, making it larger in proportion to his body to depict the enormity of his task while at the same time, showing his capability to undertake such a task.

    I poured a lot of my heart and emotion into making this,  and I was thoroughly satisfied with the end result of my efforts. The feedback about the painting has been huge! Comments and group awards on my favourite art site, RedBubble  has been very inspiring.

    It came as no surprise then that this painting was nominated by the Lozells Methodist Community Centre as the theme image for the mission in Britain’s, national advent prayers for 2013. The minister of the church kindly asked for my permission to use the painting as a compliment to the prayers for the work that the centre was doing in the community.

    I was very excited when I got the link to my work on the Methodist.org.uk site. See for yourself how my work looked alongside the prayer…

    he-prays--while-watching-over-us

    You can see the pdf file here: http://www.methodist.org.uk/media/691752/mission-in-britain-additional-advent-prayers-201112.pdf

    This came soon after I had done a one day workshop with ministers of the church at their annual Methodist Birmingham District Synod held at The Public<add link>. The workshop involved me and Bob Cooper (a minister of the church and award winning poet) delivering a workshop that challenged the participant’s visual, creative, and writing abilities. And how this ability could be used to, creatively tell the story of the good news. You can see photos of that workshop on my facebook page photo album: Creative Art Workshop 2012