Through My Eyes, an exhibition on the 16th of February at the Academy of Fine Art in Colombo/ Sri Lanka, of contemporary, visionary art, by Alann De Vuyst.
It is the theme title of my exhibition and with good reason. For since the sudden and unexpected death of my daughter and soon after my mother, I started wondering about those specials eyes we all share. Rumor has it that eyes are the gateway to the soul of a person. Eyes cannot lie, sadness to anger, frustration, anxiety are expressed in them. After Paris last year, in Germany, where I stayed with friends to grieve for 3 months, I tried to portray my child’s world in which she had chosen to live and work in- at Disney’s in Paris- I began painting her blue eyes.
In Sri Lanka I continued that introspection into the souls, which in a sense made sense, as it was a continuation of my shamanic and telepathic connection with the spirit world, a world my daughter did not believe, but my mum did. I had frank discussions with my mother about that, even on the last days of her life.
The entire series of paintings I started in Sri Lanka are dominated by blues, and thus also refer to the blue eyes, the blues I have lived throughout the mourning process, which came to a catharsis on the beach of Palangathure, where I connected with my mother and daughter’s spirit, just before New Year’s Eve.
Blue eyes run in the family, my mum, my daughter, I , the mother of my children… in different hues and shades, however.
Dad and Daughter’s Eyes by Alann De Vuyst
I started painting first my daughter’s eye, then mine. I did some studies beforehand which you will see as part of the installation of AND THE SHIPS SAIL ON. After the catharsis I seemed to have broken through a wall of depression and noticed afterward that my Fauve colors had come back, the result of which was CONNECTING TO MY MOTHER AND FATHER painting.
From the blue eye-mine has pink in it because I wanted to make a statement of biased genderizing. Pink for instance was a color for boys one-hundred years ago. Why they changed it to blue, I have no idea.
So, from the blue eyes I continued to the eyes of other peoples of different color and hominid species like the Denisovan, on this planet.
AND THE SHIPS SAIL ON by Alann De Vuyst
After I finished the installation AND THE SHIPS SAIL ON, I had a plan to paint big eyes on thebig sails of the catamarans. It occurred to me, that last year in Vietnam, in Hoy An port, I saw many boats that had eyes on them, we also know that the Ancient Romans, Ancient Egyptians, Ancient Greeks, and so forth, had that. The all-seeing- eye in a triangle, was the result of the Christian doctrine, I take it. I remember seeing one on the wall at my granddad’s. the all-seeing-eye of God. Only, here at sea, the fishermen use it to ward off the bad spirits and demons. I soon discovered, some Sri Lankans also have it painted on their fishing boats. The installation was made, and coincided with Christmas when I finished it. There is a lot of symbology and references to history and culture in my works, but It would take me too far to explain it all in detail and take your imagination away.
For my exhibition works you can visit https://theartstack.com/saweedi/artworks and a video dedicated to my daughter and mother with the works (paintings, digital, oil pastels and mixed media, made between 2013 and now are at:
Thank you all for reading this.
As an artist we keep the curiosity going, and it has not killed the proverbial cat yet. I have done installations, performances, assemblages, mixed media, digital media, and I still learn more, everyday and surprise myself of how easily everything flows out of my fingers and the it resides all in my subconscious, my heart, guts, brain and past lives. Like Picasso, I can say;” I don’t search, I find art.” The inspiration comes from within, and so I have no guru to follow but mine.