While listening to a podcast i heard an interesting concept that compelled me to analyze myself. The host discussed how... Read More
While listening to a podcast i heard an interesting concept that compelled me to analyze myself. The host discussed how a man needs a "Second" father when he's a boy, in order to form into a well rounded man, i.e: a football coach, youth group leader, etc. In reflection of my life I realized this wasn't true for me. I had football coaches, boxing trainers, scout leaders. None of them, however, taught me anything my father hadn't, they only emphasized his lessons...
I discovered there were other "Mothers" in my life, I had four.
Two were lovers of mine.
One showed me...taught me, made me feel love and compassion on a level I had never before. She opened my heart, I learned what it meant to really be vulnerable and I experienced moments so far outside my element...I could never dream of anything half as beautiful...I think without her I would have became a much worse animal than I did, one that could not be redeemed.
The Second lover taught me to trust my instinct, she instilled tenacity and discipline towards my creativity, by example she taught me sacrifice and passion. She took me in, at great expense to herself, when i was riddled with wounds and on a path of self destruction. Without her, I surely would have wound up dead on some street.
I studied under both of the remaining Mothers.
Elena Garcia, my high school theater teacher. She saw the curiosity and imagination in me. She nurtured it, she essentially forced me to push my boundaries...with love. I could write a novel on her importance to my formation, insufficiently i'll say...I would not have the strength to stand naked in public without her, nor would I have ever pursued a life of art.
Last but not least, Ada Balcacer. A Afro-Caribbean artist from the Dominican Republic. I became her apprentice after she saw one of my paintings in a group show. She taught me to read myself and my brushstrokes, that through them my subconscious is trying to speak. She showed me how to read other's works...without her I would not have developed or had the tools to develop any perspective or have the tools to perfect and learn craft.
The scene is a memory...Once, after a wonderful night with the first mention woman, we decided to walkt the beach at sunrise, naked. At some point I looked back at her, and she was standing with her head tilted upwards, eyes closed...the sunrise appeared as if it was emanating from her forehead...she stood strong yet vulnerable in a way than made me realize...that my confidence, my joy...came from her or at least was only fully possible because of her...I do not know what made me think this at that moment. She was just listening to the ocean or feeling the wind against her skin, enjoying the moment...or both...I like to think that it was made for me to have this epiphany.
The figure is a composite of my Four Mothers. Some of them are dark skinned, some mid tone, some light...I tried to combine their skin tones as best I could. I wanted her to stand broad shouldered to represent strength, while her hand sort of hid into her thigh like it was in a pocket...the reasons why I chose to exclude hands or a face of flesh or shins and feet are frankly unimportant, and varied...I had a reason for no shins and feet but I forgot it, and I will not make up a reason...I worked on this painting for two years. I was unsure who to model the face after at first...so I decided to make the face out of water and light, both absolutely necessary for live and in both, something more familiar than the love that birthed your name...though its not always obvious...its difficult for me to capture this in a photo but in person it's much easier to detect.
With this memory, and the lessons from these women who made me a man, my goal is to authentically capture the element/core/essence of these Four Mothers and reach the viewer on a visceral level...and allow them to have their own remarkable, illustrious epiphanies.
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