Friday, October 1, 2010
As You Wish to Seem
...a man has a false heart in his mouth for all the world to see, another in his breast to show his very special friends and his family, and the real one, the true one, the secret one, which is never known to anyone except himself alone, hidden only God knows where.
I came across this quote in the book I'm reading (Shogun by James Clavell) and although in the story it is used to talk about the deceptive nature of the Japanese characters, I found it be interesting because I think it has a universal truth to it, and I kept it in mind while working on this (you may notice the three hearts and their locations in the drawing). This piece is therefore largely about identity, and the duality in all of us. We all mask ourselves, changing the mask and its qualities depending on the circumstances. The title is taken from a quote by Socrates: Be as you wish to seem. I thought it was interesting when put in the context of a piece about deception, treachery, duplicity, etc. How do we wish to be perceived? And how does that affect how we portray ourselves to others? I used the mirrored twins to represent the idea of duality, a major theme in this work. The visual asthetic for this was largely inspired by Jeffery Decoster and this Belgian artist whose name I don't know. I love their collage-esque illustrations, and wanted to try something similar myself. Hopefully I didn't get too carried away with all the collaging (I have a very hard time keeping things minimal aesthetically-even when it's my goal!).
Also, those of you familiar with my work Dichotomy might recognize one of the sketches from that piece in here. I felt that she was an appropriate addition seeing as she is also from a piece largely about duality. The only part I am still pretty unhappy with are the large green and yellow splatters. If I have time I think I will make some watercolor splatters because I very much like the way my paintings for the snakes and hearts came out.