“HOPES & FEARS”
Charcoal, ink, and watercolour on paper
59.3 × 83.7 cm
Whilst working on this artwork, my main focus was to portray a message of reflection. I wanted the viewer to reflect on themselves and their choices. To achieve this, I turned to the philosophy of stoicism.
Stoicism is an ancient Greek school of philosophy. It was founded by Zino of Citium. It teaches that the purpose of life is happiness, which is achieved by virtue and self-reflection, amongst various other teachings.
Taking what I learnt from the philosophy of stoicism, I started looking into stoic quotes from Nelson Mandela, and one in particular caught my eye : ” May your choices reflect your hopes, not your fears”. This would be my conduit.
I started working on an artwork that conveyed strong conflicting emotions. I wanted to emphasise the pain that was inflicted on and felt by people of colour in the past; and that is still inflicted on and felt to this day. However I didn’t want this artwork to just be dark and dreary, there had to be something that represented that bit of hope for the future.
I decided to have myself holding a colourful bouquet of protea. The reason I chose proteas they are a symbol of diversity and rebirth, which perfectly describes modern South Africa. We were reborn from a world of oppression to form a more diverse community.
The contrast between the depressing and painful scenes and the colourful bright proteas is meant to show a choice between fear and hope, inspired by Nelson Mandela’s quote.
August 26, 2020