108/96 cm – acrylic on burlap – 38″/42″ – (2012)
Your Body is the Bow & Your Soul is the Arrow
When both are melted into the Whole of the Tao*
Once again, its meaning only appeared to me when the painting was over. It has been an intense one to make and it took me some time to accept it and to actually like it or find it good enough to be shared.
The first thing i noticed was the two characters, and the fact they looked like my parents, so i knew its meaning was about the couple and our complicated relationship.And i don’t know how i came across this Māori myth of the primal couple ” Rangi & Papa ” but i instantly felt a connection and how it was illustrated in the painting, with many elements echoing it.
We see this couple united, making one at the same time there are many blank / black space in-between and this could be the manifestation of their offsprings to separate them (as in the myth) so they can have the space to exist by themselves.As you can see in their bodies, many animals are showed from the sky’s creatures, land’s creatures, sea’s creatures, as well as some kind of monsters. All are the couple’s children (Gods), acting with the aim to separate their parents (in a way our relationship with our parents are undirectly the subject of such event, not that we want our parents to split but there’s sometimes a conflict between us and one of them and it could lead to conflicts between them too).
In the Ranginui and Papatuanuku myth, there’s also the mention of the god of storms and winds who doesn’t agree to let them separated and so he decides to fight his brothers by sending gloomy thick clouds. And this is when i’ve noticed there was clouds at the top of my painting. It said the storm would put in pieces the forest trees of one of the children and so, i then noticed on the top left of the painting, a lonely leaf and so i started to realize that it really was connected to this myth.
And it kept going on, with a battle with the god of the sea (there is a whale somewhere in the middle-right of the painting) but also a story with birds which are also in the painting … it was pretty shocking to see all the similarities.
I encourage you to discover the whole / real story, it’s interesting. In the end (to me) it just shows how special space and time can be. I never heard about this myth but somehow this painting was heavily related to it and so it has connected me to this distant past and took it right back to the present. And i believe this kind of connection happens everyday, we’re echoes of each other souls and experiences. Remembering this fact, should be an important thing to do, because it shows more than ever that we all share the same whole / entity *