Mapping Memory series
My nomadic life causes the definition of home to shift continually. My imagery comes from both the memories of places I have inhabited and the places I have visited. From as far away as Bhutan to as close as San Francisco, my journeys have been not only physically displacing but also a psychological and emotional passage. I express recollections of moments that are deeply etched in my consciousness through color and pattern.
I strive to create a world free of geographical boundaries. I mix and unite old and new maps stripping them of borders and barriers de-emphasizing their political meaning. Layers of paint create surfaces that evoke weathered walls revealing underlying histories and showing the passage of time. The structure, patterns and repetition found in nature intrigue me. They mirror the mapping and coding of invisible information stored within us. Maps branching out like trees resemble veins and arteries - these earth-related images are microcosms of the macrocosm. Symbols of shelter - rooftops, nests and houses recur in these paintings in my constant search for a place to call home. Through this exploration I have come to recognize that home is just a state of mind. Geography and heritage are irrelevant - we all spring from the same source.
I hope these works will create an awareness for the preservation of our planet and a sensitivity to all things universal.
My work here investigates the internal essence shared by all beings: the genetic blueprint of humanity. This series of hybrid works combines digital print, pigment, collage and encaustic media. Genetic codes and archetypal forms such as circles, knots and spirals are suspended in layers over cross-sections of digital portraits, reflecting our shared genetic inheritance. They represent hidden codes, complex structures, and histories that lie beneath the surface of our skin. I manipulate the wax to form irregularities and imperfections, conveying the impression of human skin and binding membranes. The faces in my art represent our diverse population and its varied phenotypes. The monochromatic palette, like a photographic negative, references medical x-rays, where perspective is blurred and internal and external images are connected. I use the color red for its direct relationship with cells and blood.
Several pieces focus on the DNA knot. I am intrigued by their configurations, both topologically and geometrically. I perceive these as a metaphor for links that tie all of humanity together. Their circular and chain-like formations also suggest the idea of continuity and infinity. Every living being on this planet is linked eternally in the great web of life; we are inevitably and inescapably related.
Internal and external mappings:
In these works, I use silk screen, monoprints, photos, encaustic and embedded metal. The images in this series are metaphors for the cycling of energy and the unity of life. My use of the circle symbolizes not only oneness, but also the cellular structure contained within us.
Mixed Media Works
(C) Gurpran Rau. All rights reserved.