Samuel Rojas Espinosa, Superficie sobre un vórtice #3 (Surface of a vortex # 3), 2019. 00cm x 100cm, Oil on canvas. (Photo: Samuel Rojas Espinosa).
The forgotten and forbidden feeling, the feeling that our whole being desires more than anything… A feeling of pleasure. Be it an act of unconditional giving, be it a smile shared with someone, be it a delicious meal, each bite of which we savor, or be it the space we are physically in. Pleasure is something we all work so hard for and often are too timid to enjoy, to savor the moment when it feels like the world has been painted by a brave artist addicted to mixing colors.
Humans are meant for pleasure; we just keep forgetting to add it to our to-do list. Last year, by dint of before unimaginable pause, we all reconfigured our lives. Looking around, we suddenly found ourselves in a world where we are allowed to be who we are – silly, more curious, less sociable, more introverted at times, and more creative. This is the world where art and creativity have served the purpose they were meant for – to lift us up, to inspire. But also let us breathe and process our traumas to find the true person hiding behind the mask. We are now in a reality where we don’t even have to hide our authentic selves to fit in. This is freedom —the freedom to finally go deeper and closer to harmony. And do it with pleasure.
What is art, after all?
Art is a visual example of a physical manifestation of energy. Where there was an empty white canvas before, now, in a dance of colors and textures, there magically appears sometimes a totally unexplainable image that touches something very personal inside. That is what artists do. In a state of meditation, they go deep into their being— their sadness and joy in search of liberation and pleasure of birthing a child that their mind has not been able to even imagine. They spit it out, like through a purge during a psychedelic ceremony, opening a window through which they can see behind the obvious. And with this vision, they go back to the canvas to discover even more, to “document” it even deeper for us mortals, thus enabling us to find our own potential. They create something that, regardless of religion, social status, or geographical location, is felt and understood. Something that without words and sounds can touch us.
The pleasure of discovering the source, the universal human/spirit language, the joy of creating “the cool” image from your own source, that’s when no branding can tell you what is “hot” on the market. What hot becomes the painting or the sculpture that takes your whole being on a journey of discovery. Isn’t it what Mona Lisa keeps doing to us for centuries? The pleasure of the secret, of the emotion that awakens and inspires us to create, dream, and dare, even though our logical minds keep reminding us about the importance of 9-to-5.
It sure is scary to shake off the heaviness of preconceptions and of the exclusivity of the world of art and make a first step towards the life of creation. However, just like anything unknown, fear usually only seems more significant than reality. And the pleasure of being surrounded by beauty and liberation is right outside of that fear. Just like during the act of an intimate connection, that sweet moment of the divine is unreachable if we refuse to get over our fear of speaking up, learning about our own bodies, and irrelevance of outside opinions. Just like the pleasure of this living is unreachable without us going within. And that’s what true artists are here for, to transmit the signal we have carefully been blocking for many years and free us up from ourselves.
Let’s consider a couple of works of the artists at the Art Frequency Gallery.
Josué Vázquez Saldaña, Caudal de tu piel. 2016. 190cm x 142cm. Temple de cola on cardboard, (Photo: by Luz Selene Marquez).
Look at the shape of a female body by Josué Vázquez Saldaña— the curves and the textures with which the artist brings it to this dimension. What does the color palette make you feel? Is it peaceful and airy? Do you want it?
Tania Bello, Los Amantes, 2015. 30cm x 40cm. Chinese ink and colored pencil on paper. (Photo: Tania Bello).
These two bodies intertwined in the act of the most profound energetic exchange between humans there is. Are you ashamed to be seen observing this piece or you want to go deeper? Use this creation to identify your feelings, use it to learn about yourself, and connect a couple more puzzle pieces.
Nidal, Yari Montes, 2019. 40cm x 42cm x 30cm. Ceramics with fabric. (Photo: Alejandro Cervantes).
What kind of acceptance does a woman have to go through to be able to be born again? Proud to accept her flaws and her decisions that made her who she is. Only she knows what it took, only she can hold her head high even though her body still remembers the wounds.
I didn’t arrive at my appreciation of art and its non-linear world through art school or through growing up in an art-filled house. I was one of the people you hear saying, “art is not for me.” I was also one of the people to whom the concept of pleasure was utterly foreign. Just like pleasure, art can be learned and weaved seamlessly into one’s experience at any point, as long as we stay curious and hungry for finding what makes us see.