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Out of My Mind & Oddly at Peace

Price: Not for Sale


Size: 12" x 16"


Medium: Pen & Watercolour Pencils


This piece was inspired by The Tree of Compassion. Both pieces are about necessary opposites.


My now ex Dave and I had been listening to a lot of Alan Watts* - an American philosopher who was around in the 1960's. In one of his YouTube videos he talks about the yin-yang. "Are these two fishes involved in a fight?" he asks. "Is the white one eating up the black one and the black one trying to eat up the white one? If that is the situation then life is nothing but a grim contest," he states. "But what happens if the white fish succeeds in eating up the dark fish?" He goes on to say that the white fish disappears as does the black one, as they only exist in relation to each other.

It's not a battle, a struggle or a war of black versus white, or order against chaos (although it can feel this way sometimes). The balance of opposites is an orchestrated dance, but it can take time to see it this way.

Out of My Mind & Oddly at Peace is split in two, with the woman in prayer facing a positive future while she turns her back to a painful past.

RIGHT SIDE (The Past): The money and pills are a representation of the pharmaceutical industry. The wine and cigarettes are close to her, as they're a support she's hugged for a long time. The background is an ocean that surrounds her as in the past there was always a sense of drowning.

LEFT SIDE (The Future): The left side illustrates the four pillars of health I mentioned in my slideshow presentation, The Art of Mental Wellness. Sleep (because it's night time), food (apples in the tree), movement (couple dancing) and connection (holding hands). The ocean on the right side flows into the yin and yang chessboard of life.

I incorporated my baby girl, Saba (an African Grey parrot), in the tree as well (just because I love her).

This piece went on to inspire Forgiveness, both of which were loosely based on a photo of me.


* Dave and I were very grateful to his lifelong friend, Bill Willenbrecht (1958 - 2018) for introducing us to Alan Watts' books.

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