Sacrifice

 

C7_Sacrifice

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8, NIV)

“[Jesus] said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.” (Luke 9:23-24, NIV)

Flight of the Monarch- Artist Statement

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This exhibition encompasses the theme of development and growth achieved by means of a journey. Comprised of both early and current works, the lifespan narrative of the Monarch butterfly is shown as it progresses from caterpillar and chrysalis (2012), to emerging as butterfly and the migration journey it spans over four generations (2016). In addition to the literal narrative, a story of Christian spirituality is also embedded within the work.

 Metamorphosis- from caterpillar to chrysalis (2012)

The series begins with a black and white colour scheme, as that is all Monarch caterpillar is able to see. The selective colouring (pink) has been used to show how the chrysalis acts as the catalyst bringing transformation from caterpillar to butterfly in the life of the Monarch. Only after emerging from the chrysalis is the Monarch able to see in colour, and better yet- in the ultraviolet spectrum.

On a spiritual note, the black and white represents the natural/physical way of viewing the world, whereas the progression to full colour highlights the increase in depth and visual insight   by the butterfly. This can be likened to an increase in ‘vision’ and direction in life and direction someone can find through faith in Christ. The pink chrysalis is also symbolic of God’s perfect, flawless love, and how this can be a catalyst for bringing about inner change and transformation in an individual’s life.

The Great Migration (2016)

The second half of the work shows the journey of the monarch as well as the diversity of landscapes encountered along the journey. The compositions for the landscapes were created using google maps by ‘zooming in’ and taking screenshots of various locations where a monarch might travel on its journey. The created perspective is like that of the butterfly viewing the landscape from a bird’s eye perspective. In addition, the paintings are laid flat on the floor where they are viewed from above, thus increasing the viewer’s sensation of viewing the landscapes in a way that resembles aerial photography.

To further the notion of different viewpoints and spirituality, the butterfly/landscape works can be viewed under three different light settings- daylight, ultraviolet light, and in the dark (glow in the dark). Viewed in daylight, this is like seeing the world from a completely physical perspective, where ‘seeing is believing’. In contrast, viewing the work under ultraviolet light is like the inner thoughts and depth of the mind. Illuminated is the conflict and contrast between the aqua colour (representing spirit/God’s will) and the red/orange tones (sinful nature/destruction/deception). This is like the tug-of-war inside the human mind between what is right and what is wrong.  Then, the third and final means of viewing is in the pitch blackness where only the aqua colour remains. This represents the spiritual aspect of mankind and the ever-present spirit of God that works in and around those who have faith in Him. It also seeks to reveal the hidden nature of God and show that not everything is as it first seems- that there is more to life than meets the eye.

God’s Image

SS1_God's image

The series begins with ‘God’s Image which illustrates how God originally created human beings- in the likeness of Himself (Genesis 1:27). The white background shows the flawlessness and purity of creation before sin. The pink represents perfect love and unity between Adam and Eve, and between the couple and God. Both pink and white represent God, as God is love (1 John 4:8).

Alienated

 

SS2_Alianated from God

The second in the series is ‘Alienated’ which depicts the absolutely devastating effects of sin in the world. Adam and Eve (represented by two red hearts) are shown cowering in the corner as they attempt to cover up their nakedness hiding from God. The large black space covering most of the painting illustrates how severe Adam and Eve’s act of sin affected their relationship with God (Genesis 3).

Not One Good

SS4_Not one good

This painting seeks to illustrate the biblical perspective of sin and how different people’s sins ‘weigh up’. . Western society tends to downplay the seriousness of human sin with the humanist perspective even suggesting that people are inherently ‘good’. The bible takes a somewhat different angle on the issue when it says “For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard” (Romans 3:23).

Immanuel

SS3_Immanuel

The white heart in the picture represents Jesus who came to earth and lived among the world full of sinners. The white colour illustrates that Jesus was fully God and the heart shape that he forfeited his godly glory and splendor to live with humility among us as a man. “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (1 John: 14, NIV)

Weigh up

SS5_Weigh up

The scales visually show who the human heart in a sinful state (red heart) does not measure up to the righteous and sinless purity of the Jesus the Son of God. This painting leaves the questioning hanging ‘How can anyone measure up to God’s standards? “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.”(Romans 6:3)

Calvary

SS6_Calvary

The three hearts on the hill represent the day Jesus and two criminals were crucified. The white heart represents Jesus with red stripes across it (the sins of the world placed upon Him) The red heart on the left represents the criminal who mocked Jesus with the rest of the crowd and did not repent of his sin, and therefore died and went to hell. The heart on the right of Jesus is still red, but has a white heart inside. This represents the other criminal that asked Jesus for forgiveness, and was granted eternity in heaven. (Luke 23) The black background is especially symbolic in this painting as it represents the colour of the sky during Jesus’ crucifixion as the bible states “At noon, darkness fell across the whole land until three o’clock” (Matthews 27:45).

Healed by His Stripes

SS7_Healed by His Stripes

The painting represents Jesus when He died on the cross and the significance of His sacrifice. The white heart represents Jesus as fully God, but in the form a man (heart shape) and the red stripes represent the sins, diseases and iniquities that were all paid for in this act of ultimate love. As stated by the prophet Isaiah (about Jesus) “Yet it was our weaknesses he carried; it was our sorrows that weighed him down. And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God, a punishment for his own sins! But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.” (Isaiah 53:5, NLT)

Risen!

SS8_Risen!

The white heart represents Jesus after He rose from the dead with the pink outline representing His perfect love. The bible speaks of His resurrection “But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large and had been rolled away. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. “Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen!…” (Mark 16:4-6)