Art is another means of helping people see and better understand the dynamics of our world and how human consciousness impacts it at every level.
My newest body of work includes abstraction and tiny lines of chaos that are meant to convey the state of our world today. I am exploring the psychological disjunction in our contemporary life caused by its fast pace and rapid changes. Children today have too much information, they struggle to keep their personal and/or cultural identity and try to make sense of what is real and what we believe is real. My intention in my creative process is to catch attention by creating a visual dialog that the viewer can intimately identify with. The challenge for me as an artist is to go beyond the internal barriers that separate us from each other.
Nature moves in circles. Black Elk, an Oglala Sioux holy man once said: “The life of a man is a circle from childhood to childhood, and so it is in everything where power moves.” The circle is a symbol of self, wholeness and totality. I use antique optical eyes lenses as one of my surfaces to paint on. The interaction of the lighting on the suspended lenses cast a shadow of the tiny paintings on the wall. Depending on how the light hits the lens determines the cast shadow. If the light or the angle of the lens changes, so too does the shadow. The installations are intended to create an environment where each lens draws the viewer into the work and intimately deeper within themselves.
I also paint on antique piano rolls not only because of their quiet and delicate nature, but as a reference to the ancient Egyptians, Gnostics, and Chinese who used scrolls to document their history and spiritual beliefs. The scrolls contained sacred texts and painted images expressing man's query into the mysteries of life. Mankind has been fascinated by and continues to seek a sense of unity everywhere and with everything. I paint with the knowledge that we can feel, resonate and absorb unconsciously or consciously Unity without words. I think that Herman Melville puts it beautifully when he says: "We cannot live for ourselves alone. Our lives are connected by a thousand invisible threads, and along these sympathetic fibers, our actions run as causes and return to us as results.”
Deborah Barr 2012 - 2016