The country has thankfully had a surge in awareness and patronage of local arts. Awarding bodies such as The Ateneo Art Awards and the Metrobank Art and Design Excellence National Competition (MADE) have served as venues for artists (both in the visual and practical fields) to showcase their work as well as provide an opportunity for the general public to view said works and in some instances, purchase something for their home or office. Those who aren’t art experts, such as me, may find some pieces scarily overpriced; I’m going to extend that train of thought to me finding a lot of the work I have been seeing lately simply scary.
Nowadays, every time I enter a house or building, I can’t help but glance at the artwork. My eye is inadvertently drawn to what the owners have decided to hang on their walls or display on their tables. I am not necessarily admiring the technique or skill used in producing said artwork but more the energy I sense in its production. We leave energy wherever we come and go; it is a vibe that someone exudes depending on their state of mind or sense of self. Do you sometimes feel someone (especially a loved one) before they even enter the room? Can you tell the “mood,” let’s say, of a painter or even a writer when you view their work? Have you felt a strong, strong connection to a magnificent mural, whether good or bad? Truth be told, what we surround ourselves with evokes certain emotions, and you can choose to believe this or not but we can absorb the emotions of others, especially if it has been passed on to something that is permanently displayed in areas we frequent.
This is why, even if I do enjoy gallery hopping and going to museums, I can only look at “dark” art for short periods of time, and I certainly would think twice before I put a painting or a sculpture of someone writhing in pain or dying in my bedroom or anywhere in my house for that matter. Call me a philistine but I patronize “happy” art; pictures and figurines that give me joy or bring a smile to my face when they greet me as I enter. Life has enough drama, I’d rather keep the macabre and the disturbing in areas that can accommodate that kind of energy. Again, this is far from being an art critique. I am aware that every artist goes through their periods, and some of the most valuable work has been created while in the throes of depression; but if they’re going to make me just as depressed when I see them, it’s of no value to me.
Recently, I came across the work of newbie artist, Robert Tony Raymundo, a semifinalist at this year’s MADE awards, his entry “Thoughts Become Things” provided a whimsical look at manifestation. For those millions of fans of The Secret, you probably remember the chapter where it was recommended that you should surround yourself with images of things you want to be or want to achieve. Some people have opted for vision boards, or scrapbooks, but if you are already a beginning (or expert) art collector, why not mount representations of what you would like to invite into your life? A short interview with Raymundo revealed an artist who was energetic and joyful; he did admit to wanting to have quit art but was encouraged by, and I quote, “my ever-loving super jolly fiancée… I was really happy to have found someone who’ll encourage me to continue what I love to do, and I am sure that it was her who brought me back to where I am now.”
So, here’s a question I’d like to pose. On a basic level would you rather have works produced by someone who is in a blissful state, or someone who’s not? It’s that simple. The energy you put into anything you do remains there, and can affect others who are recipients of whatever product that is. If you cook, you might like to do a little experiment: try a recipe when you’re happy and try one when you’re in a foul mood, I’m pretty sure even your taste buds will be affected during that state. Negative thoughts or negative emotions are like negative prayer; without you realizing it, they send out hurtful vibes to yourself and to those around you. This is karma at its simplest level: thoughts become things, good and bad. Most often, we create our own problems. We are stress self-inducers and we make ourselves ill. Art therapy in my opinion is one of the easiest ways to change your state, because you change your environment, like how you would dress up a casual outfit with a fancy or elegant accessory. You don’t need deep pockets to purchase art, but you will need to discern before you do invest in someone else’s emotional outlet.
* * *
To view more of Raymundo’s work visit http://www.wix.com/f0xdye/f0xdye-painter.
SOUL TRAIN By Katrina A. Holigores (The Philippine Star) Updated October 01, 2010 12:00 AM