francisca sosa lópez
Hey hey hey,
So I’m going to jump right into it and say that I’ve been thinking a lot about change. I think of what Heraclitus said in 500 BC and how it’s still so poignant, “the only thing that is constant is change”. This idea has been alive for over 2500 years yet we as human beings are still so precious about keeping things as they are. We accept change when it’s comfortable and doesn’t bother our routines... however we reject it or struggle to get through it when it heavily alters our reality or what we had conceived as our existence. Upgrading to a new iPhone is easier than accepting the concept of white supremacy and/or acknowledging our political systems to be failing entities. Even though Heraclitus’s statement has been with us for a long time, we still struggle understanding that the only way we evolve as people and as societies is through embracing change. But then... after giving this some thought, I realized that change can go both ways: good or bad. Is the bad a karmic lesson we must learn before it turns good? Maybe. I do understand that for change to ultimately take place it comes with teachings, with humbling and with endurance.
We might not always agree with ideas but we can’t disagree with facts. When there is too much information about one subject its transformation is inevitable. As Victor Hugo once said, “nothing is more powerful than an idea whose time has come”. With this, we must realize, that for change there is a consciousness that occurs in the mind but also an agreement with a greater power with which we have no control over. When this moment occurs, there is a step to be taken with or without you.
I add this sense of inclusion and exclusion because if we’re talking about a global change, it will happen regardless whether you want it, understand it, appreciate it or not. So the difference between those who understand adaptability and those who don’t, make Darwin’s theory “survival of the fittest” become ever more undeniable. I feel nowadays those who are “fittest” are those who are more adaptable, those who are able to change their routines, their preferences, their traditions and most importantly their thoughts. Those who will be able to endure and thrive are those who believe and understand that just as much as change, learning, is a constant. I became aware of this as I was reviewing my own work and progress throughout the two years I’ve dedicated to my masters degree. I’ve been told I’m brave and bold because I was open and embraced change to radically alter my practice. The thing is that I do not consider I’m neither brave nor bold, I’ve just been unwillingly trained to adapt through change. Because of the political chaos of my country I’ve learned from a very early age that nothing stays the same. I’ve learned that the preconceptions I’ve had of my life are unachievable and with a heavy heart I’ve understood that I must adapt to the notion of the unknown. When I say this, I do not talk about myself as a single Venezuelan, I am actually referring to most Venezuelans. We have been stripped of our dreams of what our lives would have been and we’ve had to create new dreams and then we’ve understood that these are equally uncertain. It is not my boldness and my braveness but rather it is a reflection on the resilience as a group of people. It is the power and resilience of the immigrant, him/her who understands change is constant and does not fight it. So I invite you to join the ever-unstoppable journey of change, so that you can also ever-thrive and ever-evolve.
My practice is based on the complicated relationship I have with my country. Reflecting on issues concerning Venezuela, particularly the migration crisis, I produce work based on my personal feelings, reactions, disappointments and affections to my country. From a conceptual lifelong project of drawing one bag per Venezuelan migrant (6 million migrants to date) to a mixture of abstract and figurative paintings, I explore how the idea of a country travels with its people and the various ways it may be portrayed. Memories and music give way to feelings which I interpret through color and gesture. These visual expressions form my own sensations and expressions of “my home”. Materiality has become central in the work, creating paintings from discarded wood, paper and cardboard I explore the idea of reconstruction. The concept of making something beautiful from an uneven surface and accumulated trash, is a repeated action that I use as practice for when we can pick up the debris, and rebuild Venezuela.
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