“Absolute: Totality” Painting Explores Duality of Opposites
by Daric Gill
The whole of something
The moment or duration of total obscuration of the sun or moon during an eclipse
On August 21, 2017 a collective population of millions stopped what they were doing and made their way outside. There was no national holiday to celebrate, no overly-hyped sports event, and no national tragedy to honor. For the first time in modern history, the United States saw a total eclipse whose shadow passed through 14 contiguous states. The last time an eclipse passed through the entire width of the country was 99 yrs ago. For the hours leading up to this 160 seconds, our society lived outside. We took notice of the sky. And in doing so, we took notice in ourselves. Absolute: Totality is an exploration into that grey area between being whole and being obstructed.
[Process Video & Image Gallery Below Article]
Moments of Metaphor
A grey-white cloud eclipses a charcoal grey circle. The circle eclipses a gnarled branch, which in turn eclipses a 3 foot wide steel-blue circle. All of that is encased in a dark rounded frame. I’d like to think there’s a certain celestial repetition in Absolute: Totality; culminating in a soft etherial mood.
There’s a duality in meaning behind the art. The totality is the wholeness of something and contrastingly, also the moment of total obstruction. I’ve found this to be an apt metaphor in how to view the world. Our relationships are a continual balance between self and selflessness.
The twisted and worn branch, dead now, once earned those physical gnarls. It once lived. It is earth. Without it, there is no life.
The charcoal lunar element, dead now, once earned its place across the universe. It was a traveler who made it home. It is not earth, but it helped make earth. Without it, there is no life.
The soft dusky cloud, not entirely living, but certainly teaming with life, exists one day and does not the next. It is not earth, but it was and will be later. Without it, there is no life.
Between self and selflessness there is a metaphor. A soft, etherial, touchable metaphor. Absolute: Totality is a picture of that metaphor.
Time-lapse camera and accessories were purchased through a gracious grant from the Greater Columbus Arts Council.