VALLEY OF SEARCH 1998 / 2007
"The state in which one should be to seriously search for the truth is the condition of the thirsty, burning soul desiring the water of life, of the fish struggling to reach the sea,..." - Baha'i Writings
Self-portraits shot in the studio at Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in 1998, later work completed in 2007. Images shown in Latitude 53, Edmonton AB in 2007. This series speaks of the layers of self, like invisible plastic wrap, which we tear off to reveal our true nature.
The Valley of Search - Artist's Statement
This project addresses Jungian, Baha’i and Ancient Greek themes of the unconscious coming to light, removing veils of self and attainment to the true knowledge of self. It raises the question of how we come to know the true Self, and what relationship do we have with the veils in which we are all wrapped. These photographs were taken in the studio over a series of two shoots, on black and white film, in 1998.
I am still working with these images. The struggle of the figure compels me and speaks to my personal struggle my own veils in my path to freedom and self-knowledge. My own work has been on the theme of search and freedom since 1995.
I showed part of this work in 2007 at Latitude 53 in Edmonton. I intend to show more of the photographs, and develop the black backdrop series more. The mural sized prints show the grandeur of the task we face in life, to discover our true purpose and truest self. The answer lies not in ever-increasing materialist consumption, but in peeling the very layers, which form us, and diving deeper into our inner selves.
This project questions the veils in which we are all shrink wrapped, and invites the question to the viewer to enter into his own subconscious and remove his veils in order to discover his true Self.
This figure struggles with her veils, but she also dances, plays and prances. The question of how we relate to our many layers of self is posed. Do we struggle with our Shadow, do we invite the Shadow to dance or play, in order to remove its veil? The bulb release is seen in some frames, this offers the question of who is in charge of our own self-investigation? Ultimately, only the individual can hold his own figurative bulb release.
I hope that by viewing this work you may consider the veils in which you are wrapped, like invisible plastic, that conceal your true nature.