Exploring the world opened up by a work of art
This week’s showcase:
“Everyday India 5”
Mixed media, paper bags, ink, oil, acrylic on panel, 30″ x 24″
“All lives don’t matter.” “All colors are not equal.” Ah, the power of Now, that even two broken pots can be seen as an emblem of protest. You bet! And why not? That’s the subversive luxury and indulgence of art to be able to speak into just about any moment.
“Everyday India 5” speaks of Now in vibrant, lush detail, the reality and way of life of something and someone foreign, “other,” in this instance, a fabric artisan’s studio in India being used for preparing dyes.
The scene is of a dilapidated, gorgeous mess. Shattered vessels that somehow continue to hold liquid, a rickety table past the verge of collapse, a switch box beneath it which is most assuredly useless, and a dollop of used blue rags, front and center, to clean it all up. All of this is against a labyrinth of deliciously colorful bricks atop shreds of Indian newspaper clippings.
Unlike anything you’ve seen? Of course. That’s the idea. There is no loving something “other” without knowing it first. Marks is keen to immerse us in the experience and environment of others, nudging us to “walk a mile in their shoes”. . . . So as to love “them”.
In her work, Marks gives us the ingredients to bridge the gap between “us” and “them”:
-one part empathy,
-two parts understanding,
-mix in a lot of paint . . .
And suddenly Now you’re in a protest worth marching.