Anonymous (attributed to artist of Create Art in the Ch’i)
Found 07/2010, Goodwill (South Lamar and Manchaca)
The eye plays a central role in this complex abstract work. The artist creates a swirling vortex of visions, many implying prosperity and potential, some darker images, some ambiguous. At the center of the image is a glowing eye. Around it: a large gem; a structure that suggests perhaps the Eiffel tower at night; running figures in the style of Keith Haring, perhaps playing soccer; a woman wearing jewelry with startling eyes; an ambiguous character that combines the concepts of a small child and a robot; an image that invokes both a snake and a spermatozoa, echoed by a related figure that seems to have a forked tongue.
It may be that the chaotic tumble of images are the visions of the two characters in the front, the potential, good or ill, that they may face. The female character’s eyes are wide, she seems to be excited, even feverish, the jewelry and make-up suggests that she is very much “of the world” and that these are her potentials. The male figure may be world-avoidant, his eyes are vacant, “X” marks suggestive of death, and the antenna suggest a drone lost in the media world; he retreats into the illusion of technology to avoid these threats.
It is difficult to discern the artist’s intent in these highly abstract works, and in some pieces, particularly those inspired by the 1920s Dada movement, the meaning of the piece is the emotions it inspires in the viewer. The tension of Visions is in the contrast between the two representational figures and the images of prosperity, travel, activity, reproduction, and the self as represented by the eye. The meaning is ultimately the work’s subjective effect on the viewer.
(Note: Visions is attributed to the artist of the mixed-media piece Create Art in the Ch’i. The two pieces were discovered together, and both share a similar density and sense of motion.)