Asst. Prof. Danaya Chiewwattakee

Abstract :

“In nature nothing exists alone.” (Silent Spring by Rachel Carson) To exist everything has to be relying on each other in order to survive just like new seeds that are relying on the heat of wildfire to grow into a lush forest.

Scarab (aka dung beetle) charm, the Egyptian symbol of resurrection relates the belief of the afterlife and the transformation of life to death. They believed that in death the soul leaves the body, meets the god and then reincarnates. This belief led to the choosing of elements of color in the charm which represent powers. For example, blue represents wealth and happiness as it is the colors of the sky and sea.

Creating a vast landscape piece and using thunderbolt as a comparison between human life and earth and universe. Light from meteors are the fireworks that fall down to the world in the shape of a flower. The use of unicellular and sea organism-shaped stars created by Ernst Haeckel represents pilgrimage, seeking happiness and beauty. The scarab represents spiritual reincarnation. These ideas conbine into 2 pieces of work, the landscape piece and insect sculpture created by using recycled auto parts.

To be resurrected is not only physical but also spiritual. Even though there is fear, mistake and weakness through the process, these things strengthen the inner power as a process to achieve a better self. This process is also called the process of growing as a human. We are not perfect so we have to learn how to appreciate beauty, life and responsibility to the world and also create new meaning of life. Human beings from the past to present have proved this by creating works to make the world better like flickering stars in a vast universe.

Objectives :

The work was created by using the satellite photo as reference and then deconstructing the photos and combining them into collage to create the landscape from imagination. Also throwing in thunderbolt, meteor, star, ancient flower, insect, and seashell as symbols of the relationship between living creatures, world, universe, and scarab, the symbol of egyptian reincarnation ritual. This is the re-imaging of the transcendence from the physical realm into the spiritual realm. The landscape piece created a feeling of moving in a circle in a scattering and flickering fashion which represents chaos and the power of change.

Conceptual Framework :

Expanding small things into larger scales and also shrinking larger things into smaller scales. For example using plankton sea to create a starfield and using the image of the estuary of the Ganges River to create a landscape. This was done to emphasize the relationship between living creatures, the world and the universe in a surrealistic way.

As an Egyptian symbol of reincarnation, Scarab has been reimagined as a symbol of spiritual reincarnation and the most difficult one, attitude readjustment.

Process / Methodology :

  • Researching on infrared satellite imagery, earth view image, images of the estuary of the Ganges river, images of icebergs in Petermann glacier in Greenland, and images of hurricanes over the red sea.
  • Researching on images of lighting tornado, hurricane, thunderstorm, five lighting tornado, and meteor light
  • Researching on images of Art Forms in Nature / Plankton Sea Biology / The Art and Science by Ernst Heackel, Images from Masterpieces Botanical Illustration, images of insects, flowers, and seashells
  • Inkjet-printed landscape on canvas as background and embroidered over with shapes of flower, insect, seashell, hurricane, meteor, unicellular organism and sea animals into layers which creates a feeling of moving in a circle in a scattering, falling, and flickering fashion. 

Techniques and Materials :

  • Acrylic color painting on paper / Inkjet printing on canvas / multi-layers embroidery
  • Four metal scarabs were created by auto parts and displayed next to the landscape piece.

Result / Conclusion :

The concept of sky and star have plenty of abstract elements. To be accurate with the composition which requires the shapes to be in exact same size is difficult and making it hard to create perspective and can overwhelm audiences. As the artist did not want this to be a scientific image of the universe, their first intention was to include and image of lovers into the piece but the result was that it would not fit with the concept. Additionally, the collage of pieces of cloths can make audiences feel baffled and overwhelmed. Because of this reason the artist still wants to add more texture, weight, and techniques to the piece.

The piece consists of many intricate and complex layers which vary in weight and size, a certain level of attention is required for the audiences to see the details such as images of flowers, insects and seashells which were embroidered into the piece. Metaphorically, this process is like using a flashlight in a darkroom and the flashlight is the eyes of the audience.

References :

  • Walter Lack, (2001) Garden Eden. TASCHEN GMBH, Italy.
  • Brianna Wiest, (2023) The Mountain is you.
  • https://www.Lesa.biz/earth/atmosphere/phenomenon
  • https://www.nstda.or.th/th/Instra-knowledge/3011-acerla Photograph
  • Compilation of Strange Extraterritorial cases X Weird, Salmon Podcast/3 Body Problem (Netflix Thailand)
  • Million Cells June 8, 2566 Be Videos.

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