“Brain on Fire” Beacon, NY 2012
When I thought about organizing an exhibition for the second Saturday in December, the end of 2012, I wanted to select paintings from my work that somehow reflect the times we live in. I wanted to present a kind of tribute to the end of the year… this metaphysical year, which for so many reasons … seems so important to us. It was not difficult for me to find pictures that represent these times, as so much of my work involves the search for meaning in primitive cultures; cosmology, mythology, and the origins of magic and mysticism.
My first idea was to make an installation out of my planet paintings. I placed “The Planets”, in the center of the space of my studio, to represent my own personal universe and cosmic center.
I present,”The Cosmic Serpent”, as an archetypal image which existed before monotheism as a creator of life. For me, this symbolizes the DNA of our culture and traditions, which can be found in the most ancestral villages throughout the world.
My “Chamans Attic,” and “Chaman-kala,” are self-portraits of the artist as shaman, who somehow during the act of creation, absorbs the collective disease of society, in a sort of spiritual exorcism. I present the artist as a Priestess, not unlike her traditional role in primitive societies, and very much unlike the decorative object of women that is so often represented in today’s world.
“Akelarre,” is a trance state, which authenticates the savage mind, and returns us to our magical and mystical origins.
“The White Ladder,” in my interpretation of how the different levels of the cosmos are connected. I am very attracted to this reoccurring symbol that appears in the most ancient paintings, throughout Australia, Tibet, Nepal, Egypt, Africa and the North of Spain
“Teotihuacan,” is the place in Mexico “where man met the gods.” This place still remains one of the largest and most populated centers of the world. “The Pyramid,” is my portrayal of the first astronomical observatory.
“Lepenski-Vir,” were the first sculptures of large format in Europe, and are thought to be signify the first practice of organized worship. They can be seen in the so-called “iron doors” on the Danube.
To me the whole creative process is mysterious and inexplicable. Perhaps we are now coming back to the time where the mysterious and unexplained is once again part of our everyday lives. Perhaps these times signal a new beginning when we can accept the unknown without fear, in order to restore the balance between nature and men .
For Immediate Release September 28, 2012
Maria Lago introduces her new series The Exodus Paintings, this weekend at Maria Lago Studio 502 in Beacon, NY. These paintings are a continuation of Lago’s traditional expressionistic style that combines works of strong color, brush and texture with meaningful messages of spiritual and social matters. Lago has been mining this vein for the last twenty-five years in New York, exhibiting throughout the metro region and in her native homeland of Spain. Maria Lago Studio 502 in Beacon, NY has been her working studio and exhibit space since the spring of 2011.
The new works are concerned with the experience of higher awareness and spiritual revelation that results from the movement of peoples throughout the world. In these powerful paintings we see groups of seemingly displaced and anonymous peoples moving though landscapes that are hauntingly familiar and yet foreign at the same time. The landscapes seem to be moving and changing along with the journey the assembled groups or tribes of people seem to be undertaking. Although the urban, rural, and lunar geographies change, the paintings imply that the collective immigrant and migratory experience leads to a better place. As the title of the paintings Exodus refers to the biblical reference, the works portray an age old story replaying itself throughout the millennium and still happening today.
The paintings also work on a metaphysical level as the abstract landscapes distort dimension and perspective. The small figures within the paintings are adrift in much larger worlds evoking physical movement of atoms within molecules or data migrating between formats. These highly charged images have a distinct character of purpose and meaning that is elegantly portrayed with heavy impasto, and layers of mixed media.
“These works deal with persecution and human rights violations that create refugees in underdeveloped countries, as well as legal and illegal immigrants moving in search of work, food and shelter in developed countries,” explains Lago. An immigrant herself, the works provide insight into the personal story of an established artist who is very much enjoying the journey.
The works will be on display throughout the month of October. Maria Lago Studio 502 is located at 502 Main Street, Beacon, NY. Please call 845-765-8421 for further inquiries or additional information.